Thursday, December 21, 2017

Thursday Poem - At the Winter Solstice

Owl hoots three times in the far woods,
fair warning for all small creatures
scurrying to their burrows.

Are we not still and always
those crouching figures
who flee the heavenly alchemy?
Three times in the crackling air,
Owl hoots for us.

Wind plays the drums of snow...
staccato taps,
crescendo off the roofs,
flourish of shuddering branches.
Ice snaps its castanets,
its daggers.

Atonal music of the darkest days
needs the most fearless,
subtle listeners.

Those strumming flamenco
fingers of sunlight
are a long time away from now.

Now we go comforted
in dreams and ceremonies,
flaming our star-speck candles,
raising our voices against that other music,
drowning out the forever
at night’s heart.

Look up! The wheel is turning.
The spectacular crowd of stars,
the tangle of dimensions
jostle for our attention.
Salute the birth of everything holy.

Dolores Stewart Riccio

If you live in the north as we do, this festival in the heart of the long white season is observed with thanksgiving and reflection, with mulled wine and fine munchies, songs and tales, firelight and rowdy fellowship.

Let the bells ring out, and the games begin. From this hallowed moment onward, we will gain a few minutes of precious sunlight every day until the Summer Solstice on June 21. On this day, we celebrate the triumphant return of old Helios, the ascendance of light in the fertile darkness of winter.

This morning's exquisite poem was written for the Winter Solstice by Dolores Stewart Riccio and published in her exquisite Doors to the Universe. It is posted here with kind permission from the late poet. I still miss my friend, and this was one of her favorite celebrations.

Merry Yule everyone!


Barbara Rogers said...

Happy Solstice to you. It's been such a year of joyful reading of your blogs. I just want you to know how much I appreciate you.

Mystic Meandering said...

And Merry Yule to you, Dear Cate... You are much appreciated :)

Riognach said...

Merry Solstice to you! I offer an old Druid blessing: May your days, like the sun at the Winter Solstice, increase in length, in warmth and in Light"!