Days and months and seconds and years melt into memory
Past reaches behind us under us filling in the white space
And all the while nothing stagnates nothing remains solid
The dance continues the march the pursuit the ride
Moving us along the days months seconds and years
Who can fault a month that celebrates a day of LOVE and a long weekend for PRESIDENTS? Not me, at least not this year, while we are being inundated with snow storms and snow flurries and even more snow showers. Ode to February indeed!! Along with all that white bluster, there is poetry to read while curled up sipping hot chocolate, inspiring us through this short and lovely month.
A course more promising
Than a wild dedication of yourselves
To unpathed waters, undreamed shores; most certain,
To miseries enough: no hope to help you;
But, as you shake off one, to take another:
Nothing so certain as your anchors; who
Do their best office, if they can but stay you
Where you’ll be loth to be: besides, you know,
Prosperity’s the very bond of love,
Whose fresh complexion and whose heart together
Affliction alters. (“Winter’s Tale” Shakespeare)
With our move behind us, we are once again able to get out and about and celebrate with autumn in full flame around us. Vermont is abuzz with tourists from near and far, taking in the many vistas, and counting themselves lucky to view the foliage. We are thrilled to be right there on the trail with them as the leaves peak with color while the temperatures are still mild enough to enjoy being outdoors. Whatever may still be on the To-Do list can wait until tomorrow when there is such a glorious afternoon!
January, I need to let you know a few facts. Sure, you’re a long and hearty month, and one that demands we play by your rules, but seriously, we all must do what we must to survive you. I get it, if you had it your way, we’d all be hibernating like bears, hunkered down, stoking a smoky fire in a clay hut. But listen January, you may be bitter and cold and rigid and frigid, but we just can’t live like that. Not really. Not this year. Sure snowbirds may fly to Miami to escape the real you, but for those of us who hang tough to tell the tale come May, we have a few tried and true strategies. For starters, we keep color inside while your landscape lays bare on the other side of our frame. That’s right. A pop of color to remind us that even January, as big and rough as you want us to believe, is temporary.
Although a fabulous pretender my mother was not a fly by nighter: she was a planner. In August we planned our Christmas gathering, at Christmas we planned our summer reunion. While I begin the task of emptying her scarf drawer, winter closet and filing cabinet, I see that some of her plans weren’t as rock solid as I once thought to be, but compared to who I was at say 15 or even 26, I can state for certain she got me to look forward and plot out a life worth looking back on. My mother usually began our random solitary talks quick to the chase by asking, “What’s your five year plan?” On first hearing, her question was as alien to me as reading Mandarin, maybe even more so.
Last week while still in Louisville I had the good fortune to hear Richard Blanco retell his story: from immigrant to inaugural poet for Obama in 2013. The story he shared is fabulous, filled with colorful elaboration, detailing his parents’ bold move from Cuba to Miami, recalling his fascinating childhood to his own journey as a poet. He moved his audience to tears and laughter, from the nostalgia of the past to the shared hope for the future. His story touched us all as pieces of it became our own. How he was picked by the White House is a mystery, even to him, but once we all heard his voice ring out over the capital on that cold January day, that no longer mattered. Richard Blanco is all of us.