Monthly Archives: December 2012

Absorbed

She normally works at night, she said, and closes up the store,
so she wondered why the song was loud out on the floor.

She counted charms with her right hand,
starting with the pearl bezel setting,
then ended with the angel’s wing and then

lithely wrapped the package in gold paper (the end a cleft)
a mirror bearing her reflection from the left.

Her lively figure evidenced, she smiled a coquettish smile,
demonstrable, even with her speaking
it was a pleasure to meet me (for that little while).

Bells

bellsThings I’ve done in the last 48 hours.

– Baked 6 loaves of special holiday whole wheat bread, with cinnamon and brown sugar*.
– Delivered 4 loaves of the aforementioned bread as gifts to friends
– Ate 3/4 of 1 loaf of the aforementioned, remaining bread
– Searched TV menu for decent Christmas programs, finding none.
– Watched 1/3 of each of the LOTR movies
– Finished Christmas shopping for 6 gift cards, 1 bracelet, 2 sweaters, 6 bottles of shampoo/lotion that I can’t smell, and 2 or 3 things that were bought that I’m not sure what happened to them.
– Drank 1 bottle of Magic Hat #9
– Bought 2 large packs of AA batteries
– Watched the final 2 minutes of 2 different NFL games
– Washed 3 loads of my son’s college laundry to get it out of the floor
– Listened to 1/9th of my 9 hour Spotify Christmas playlist
– Played ukelele for 5 minutes
– Assembled 1 rolling rack
– Ventured out twice to the local megamart after I specifically stated that I wanted my errands completed early, so I would have to experience the last minute madness…yet I forgot 2 things…at 2 different times.
– Pondered how to write a 1 Christmas post that could accomodate my desire to recognize one of my favorite carols/poems.
– Wrote the following sentence – Henry Wadsworth Longellow wrote a poem in 1863, entitled “Christmas Bells.”

It was written on Christmas Day 1863, likely as a result of the news that Longfellow’s son Charles had been wounded in Civil War action earlier that year…and the recent loss of his wife Frances. There is just a snippet below. I encourage you to search out the poem and read all of it. It is short by Longfellow’s epic lyrical poem standards**.

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
and mild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It has been set to music twice. In 1878, the English organist, John Baptiste Calkin, used the poem with a melody he previously used as early as 1848. The more familiar version was set to music in the 1950’s by Johnny Marks (he of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer fame). I’m partial to the Bing Crosby recording. However, google the recent recording by The Civil Wars, which is very inspiring, and in light of the poem’s origins, somewhat “poetic.”

Wishing you all a Happy Christmas.

********************
*A recipe handed down in the oral tradition from my father to me. Though it has origins in the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook.
**Pun intended

Facing Christmas

star
Where is hope, this time of year, as some are wont to shed a tear,
wondering if it exists, in a world that leans and lists.

As if you have the wherewithal to stay above the means at all;
emotions ragged, fractured too – thinking all depends on you.

Hope against itself to win the inconceivable, again
your hope- against all hope will be your dream, your joy, a victory.

Remember this – a tale of old – of a child born in the cold
in a tiny stable there in a town where no-one cared.

Thus began a simple life, bound with hardship- full of strife.
Yet in his story, we can see a dream, a joy, a victory,

all encompassed in a soul who loved his fellow man, in whole
or maybe just in part, because he knew what difficulty was.

Who knows best that love is blind to all our faults, and we will find
that when we stop to ponder this, emotions that we can’t dismiss,

we are bound to seek the aire of happiness at Christmas, where
in a world gone wild, disgraced – we find it on a child’s sweet face.

A simple smile with wondering eyes, full of sparkle, no disguise
will stop us from our self-defeat and bring us back to where we meet

the once-young child in each of us. We celebrate the hopefulness
with inner peace, contentment grows, something that our smiling shows.

And all it seems your heart desires – no more than anyone requires –
is gained by giving of yourself in ways that open others’ hearts and sways

their temperament to one of cheer -especially this time of year-
and bringing forth a simple smile that’s worth the effort and the while.

***********************

flipping records

record
it is when
all you hear
is a bumping sound
with a few short bursts of
crackle,
that you realize
the songs have all ended.

you must flip
the record to side two
or change out the record
to hear new songs.

-it doesn’t just switch itself-

neither can you pick and choose
your music with play-list ease,
without the drop sound of the needle scratching

-abruptly-

the music must play from beginning to end,
the way it was meant to be heard.