Sunday, November 30, 2014
Colored Lights Under the Dome of Dark
Things are different this year in more ways than one or even two. I piddled around most of the day, unpacking, doing laundry, catching up on email and so forth. I did a little shopping, too, mainly for the kids, and at one moment contemplated buying colored lights to hang somewhere in the house or outside. We're a white light kind of family, and there was a time when I thought colored lights were actually pretty atrocious. For some reason though, today, I couldn't take my eyes from those little globes that you see above, and I'm thinking of bucking tradition and buying a few strands. When I walked home, I realized, too, that despite the melancholy of "the season," I am looking forward to making my home look warm and welcoming, to seeing the lights in the houses and stores, to saying good-bye to this year and welcoming the next.
The great poet Mark Strand died the other day. Here's a good one of his:
Lines for Winter
as it gets cold and gray falls from the air
that you will go on
the same tune no matter where
you find yourself —
inside the dome of dark
or under the cracking white
of the moon's gaze in a valley of snow.
Tonight as it gets cold
what you know which is nothing
but the tune your bones play
as you keep going. And you will be able
for once to lie down under the small fire
of winter stars.
And if it happens that you cannot
go on or turn back
and you find yourself
where you will be at the end,
in that final flowing of cold through your limbs
that you love what you are.
Mark Strand (1934-2014)