Holiday Cheers


What?  This hardly looks cheerful.  Rain (not snow this year) due any second, no sign of happy shoppers, just another drab day in an increasingly drab season.  Solstice passed, we assume the sun is making his way back, but it will be a long journey until spring.  Meanwhile, all our instincts are to burrow in somewhere for the rest of the winter.

These are the times when I must force myself outdoors, to follow the normal routines of walking about, enjoying the few bird calls that are there, watching the play of light and feeling the grace of the breeze.  If I dress appropriately, the world is still an immense playground.  And, of course, there is the added bonus of gatherings of friends and family when I return, warming my soul while my fingers and nose catch up.

I drone on about the subtle harmonies of browns when it suits my purposes, trying to contrast how I feel now with my emotions in summer.  But conifers are here in profusion, and their green needles quietly insist I am mistaken.  The white sand, the grey sky, the blue water all join the chorus.  And that is without getting into the brash colorful chatter of manmade objects no matter where I look.  My carefully constructed observations are, inevitably, founded on falsely narrowed perceptions.

The world is too infinitely diverse to describe.  Much of what we could know, we never do.  I suspect there is even more that we are unable to comprehend.  But even in that narrow band of what we think we do know, based on what we think we do perceive, our limitations at any given moment are only allowing us a frozen impression of what our mercurial minds will eventually realize as they slide along and about.  Consciousness is a miraculous gift, reborn each moment, an appropriate thought for these days of solar renewal.

Suspended moment, almost unformed, misty and cool and waiting for rain or clearing or something besides the transience of suspended droplets.  Waiting, as it were, for birth, which is really the theme of this season.  The birth of a new year, or the return of the sun, or the religious encapsulation of Christianity.

It is appropriate to have a celebration of being born, for that is hope and future and genetic or cultural continuation.  Bring out all the bright lights, exchange gifts, devour feasts.  The old will soon enough have their day of reckoning, but for now it is all about the bright promise of what will be, and being grateful for what there is.


Ah, Christmas skies clear with the dawn.  Lovely symbolism.  Except, like many things, this clearing comes from an unexpected direction.  The east, where the sun is presumably rising, is covered in thick dark clouds, and the light is all from the west.  How silly we often are, to think we know where to look into the future.

I insert here the standard prayer for peace on earth and goodwill
for all.  Optimistically, I think that still has a chance to happen, and that after our difficult cultural transitions there may yet be a golden age for all.  It’s a good dream to have.


Very mild holiday week _ no snow, in the fifties, verdant lawns.  When I escape the rush, there are quiet unfrequented places in the woods, such as this, where no delivery truck nor yard crew roams.  That may all change in a few years, as the drones frequently given as presents yesterday become common everywhere.  The world continues to change in unexpected ways.

All I can do is be grateful for having lived now, for living now, for still having enough of the wonder of a child to appreciate my existence.  As I grow older, I realize that has been greatest gift of all, and no mere bauble from the mall can produce nearly such happiness.

Children’s happy laughter and loud adult conversations have died down, overwhelming anxiety gives way to calm.  Perhaps after New Year’s there will be resignation, perhaps anticipation of all that is to come, but for now it is enough to relax and forget about what was and may be.

Normal life gradually returns as do all the visitors.  The sun continues to rise and set, the ducks and geese swim in the cool, and media inform us of new storms on the horizon.  I am simply happy to look out and be grateful for everything.





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