Friday, December 19, 2014

A Christmas full of hope

I bet you've heard the saying "If you want to make god laugh, tell her your plans." Next year, in 2015, I'm going to see if substituting hopes for plans let's me create a new version that goes something like "If you want god's help, tell her your hopes." Although this year has had many high points, it's also had a fair share of stress. As a mechanism for coping with the efforts of choosing a contractor (for the house), the chaos of construction (on the house), Christmas madness (in the home, during construction), and consolidation (of various retirement funds being held by too many administrators), all of which have stretched out over the past several months, I'm starting to focus on good things for next year.

Guardian of hope
Guardian of hope
Photo by J. Harrington

Here's some of what I'm hoping for: 
  • at least a couple of trip possibilities, maybe one to the BWCA and another to a music festival in Grand Marais; 
  • with the ending of construction and the related banging and pounding and chaos (leaving room for other kinds of chaos), maybe finally finishing a poetry/photography/iMovie project I've been working on for months;  
  • more walks with the dogs; 
  • maybe, with lots of luck, getting back into fly-fishing. 

Home is where your dog lives
Truthiness at Christmas
Photo by J. Harrington

Santa's not going to be leaving any of this under the tree or in the stockings. He might, however, leave something(s) that will increase the liklihood that we'll actually get to realize some or all of these hopes. As Elie Wiesel noted in his 1986 Nobel lecture, Just as man cannot live without dreams, he cannot live without hope. We hope this holiday season and all of next year are full of dreams and joy and hope for you and those you care about.

“Hope” is the thing with feathers - (314)

By Emily Dickinson 

“Hope” is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -

And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -
And sore must be the storm -
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm -

I’ve heard it in the chillest land -
And on the strangest Sea -
Yet - never - in Extremity,
It asked a crumb - of me.

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