Friday, December 20, 2013

Solstice eve

Tomorrow is Winter Solstice. The weather is supposed to be sunny and temperate. I hope you've got your shopping done so you can celebrate the shortest day of the year with those closest to you. Daylight has reached its nadir for the year. The Noongwa e-Anishinaabemjig created a language lesson for the Winter Solstice that includes the sentence "Today the sun stops and looks over all of us on earth to see how we are living." I like that concept, that there are others in the universe who are interested in how we are living. We seem to make some progress from time to time but too many of us, too often, fail to show enough respect for our home and each other. While you're celebrating this season with your family and friends, remember that others could use some thoughtfulness and caring. This rabbit person probably appreciates the fact that birds are messy eaters (and that, by the garage, we left a canoe to be lived under).

cottontail feeding under bird feeder
cottontail feeding under bird feeder       © harrington

I know I appreciated the fact that there's some sunshine today, that I got to enjoy a Cajun breakfast with family and friends at the Louisiana Cafe, and that I had the rare sense to resist buying just a book or two this close to Christmas. I also appreciate the fact that all the major present shopping has been completed, I think, and that, while I've been writing this, someone, probably the daughter person's fiancee, has been blowing snow from the driveway. In her book that I just finished reading, Braiding Sweetgrass, Robin Wall Kimmerer makes a number of points about the need for reciprocity in our relationships with each other and the earth. It seems to me that that's a lot of what we try to achieve with our (at least seasonal) desire for Peace on Earth, Good Will to All. It would help a lot, I believe, if we could manage to remember that reciprocity and good will need to be constant in our lives, not just part of a seasonal celebration. Do you think we could manage that?

Cathedral Creche
Cathedral Creche               © harrington

Emily Dickinson certainly has good will to spare in this poem about snow flakes.

Snow flakes. (45)

By Emily Dickinson 
I counted till they danced so
Their slippers leaped the town –
And then I took a pencil
To note the rebels down –
And then they grew so jolly
I did resign the prig –
And ten of my once stately toes
Are marshalled for a jig! 

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