The longest night of 2022 ends with a deep, electric cobalt blue sky. It’s the kind of blue that sings whale song in my bones, and lifts my scalp awake. A drinkable blue that nourishes every cell, every atom. It changes every second, lighter and lighter; I can’t look away.

Solstice yesterday was an island of stillness and sunlight, a deep breath in and out. I felt warmed by peace, nested in the quiet of the world. This morning’s lightening sky reveals a wash of clouds reaching east from west. They carry the rain that will fall, then freeze later this evening. After that we will get a deep blanket of snow, in what has been billed as ‘the storm of a generation’.

I have a video interview this morning at Centre3, then I Santa myself north through the rain with a trunk full of gifts for my beloveds. Stay safe, all. And bring on the snow!

Meanwhile, in this moment I drink in the impossible blue in the sky, watch the thin line of apricot to the southeast, where the sun will rise. It is the dawn of this planet’s turning, back toward the light.

I’m so happy to be here, to watch this happen.

Years ago before the world became smaller and when time traveled at half its current speed, Decembers were tightly scheduled things, stuffed with gatherings and meals, concerts and car rides with laughter, hugs and double scotch at arrival. Fireplaces, wet socks and snow pants, muscles stretched and tingling from the effort to stay vertical while on skis in a steep mogul-ed descent. Sing We Now of Christmas through the speakers, then by the second glass of wine a mad farce of carolling with high voices and round mouths. Those giggling carols took us south to Grandma’s house every year, Dad with his beautiful rich baritone, the three of us finding the inner harmonies in plainsong, hymn, wassail. Joy in the World, indeed.

This first pandemic-era Christmas has emphatically re-sounded the gathered joy and giggle. The Anderson Christmas Festival and Sleigh Ride (yes, orchestras can lighten up & make horse and whip sounds), the ringing congregational voices in Tom Thomson’s childhood church for a Lessons and Carols service, risen phoenix-like to claim it’s 24th year even as the frosty wind made moan, and snow fell outside. Snow on snow on snow.

The blue has become a purplish payne’s grey, the thread of apricot now a widening crack in the clouds which lets in the flash of golden yellow. The red tailed hawk has found her perch on the radio tower, and the starlings frolic on my roof, which prompts the cat to try and sing to them in their language. Four big crows fly north over the top of the big plane trees, which are perfectly still in homage to Solstice.

Ah. And here is the sun. It is a handsome morning, this first of this new earth-year.

Happy Christmas and warm holidays to you. I’m glad to be together in this good world.

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