Thursday, December 22, 2016

Bye Bye Carols, Hello Yule!

Our last carols program scheduled for this year is now history, and what fun it was! A house party full of musicians and singers, good food, and the Solstice all rolled into one fine evening.

Larry opted to stay home this time. We've been on the road a lot lately, and he needed soe quiet, down time. But he lit a Solstice fire outside for me, and had a beautiful fire going in the fireplace and wine poured when I got home. Am I spoiled or what?

 Now we enter winter, and at the same time see the days grow longer, minute by minute. It is a special season indeed, a time when the old ones said the veil between the living and the spirit world is thinnest, when memories and traditions come alive, a time to reflect on the year past and look ahead to the coming year.

I love this time of year, and I love winter. I enjoy the quiet of it, the slowed pace, the time to refuel, reorganize. There's long evenings by the fire in our cozy log room, slow breakfasts and time to read and write. No rushing off to storytelling events, no weeds and grass demanding attention, no piles of vegetables sending urgent "we're gonna rot!" signals. We can cook the good food we put up instead, and enjoy the summer's work.

I stayed outside for a bit last night, watching the fire. It inspired this poem, and when I went inside I wrote it down.


Smoke curls and swirls

heavenward, through reaching

branches naked white against

a dying day.

The darkest night holds in its cusp

the birth of light, slow and quiet--

an owl drifts tree to tree

and somewhere Coyote sings

a song ancient as the mistletoe,

the holly and the ivy, twining

through wisps of flame and stars.

My voice raises in timid song

weaving melody with Coyote’s harmony;

while spirits stir and listen,

earth settles into sleep.

This morning the waxing moon was riding high, with a star--or perhaps a planet, need to check the celestial map--just below her. The fire was still burning, bright coals glowing in the early light. The day promised to be fine. I flipped on the outside Christmas lights because the school bus had not yet run, and why have the lights if children cannot see them?

Today was a rush of errands and booth work but the next two days will be spent getting ready for Christmas day--cleaning, cooking baking. The good things of life come to us all at this time of year, whatever our religious persuasion.

It's a time for gentleness, kindness, and thoughtfulness. A time to spread joy and love. A time to gather with those we love, to reach out to those who are alone and afraid, to offer a helping hand where we can.

What if we all carried this behavior into the new year, and continued to act every day as we do at the holidays (or as we try to--goodness knows there are always times when the worst side of our human nature, and relationship dysfunctions, take hold for a bit!)? But what if...?

What if?

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No  Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.


annie said...

Enjoy your rest, Granny Sue!
I've enjoyed reading about your adventures this year.
Wonderful holiday,
Many blessings and friendship to you both, and peace!
Merry Christmas!

Brig said...

What if, indeed!

A very Merry & Blessed Christmas to you and yours!

Quinn said...

There's a lot to be said for someone who lights a fire for you. And it's all good!

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