In the Bleak Midwinter…

In the Bleak Midwinter…

“In the bleak midwinter, frosty winds made moan

Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone.”   

Christina Rossetti  1872

I welcome yet another new year.  It feels good to shed the old skin and attempt to dress with relish in the tighter-fitting garments that holiday feasting have created.  I look about my world and think of the major events that shape it.  Now is a time that reflection should transition to action.

I will tell you that a Moon Garden is one planted with specimens that bloom only in white or have foliage in grey or mottled with creamy variegation.  It is a garden to be enjoyed in the moonlight.  It is the first of my many garden rooms that I see when approaching my house in the evening.  On All Hallow’s Eve this past year, the Moon Garden, the place of my dreamy reverie, was covered with eight inches of heavy wet snow.  Everything was stressed not the least of which was the owner.  These are my children and they were suffering!

The White Garden Orefield PA 18069

The Moon Garden in a better season. The photograph was taken by a grand and glorious photographer, Karen Bussolini. She is a special friend and fellow communicator of sustainability.

Since the disappearance of that early snow and the steady decline of temperatures into our normal winter cycle, I have been impressed to see how quickly my garden has acclimated itself.  It will be restored to full vigor when it surges back into bloom next spring.  Still, because my thoughts are caught on the bare branches of deciduous trees, I wonder why nature would react so positively to such early abuse.  Why does she continue to rebound for us?
 
In this season, I am actively seeking causes of why our own non-responsive nature doesn’t rebound when confronted with the abuse we heap on the natural world surrounding us.  Do we ever notice when the world cries out for cures to many of its uncurable illnesses?  Our sicknesses range from the common cold to the end of the polar ice caps.  And I think back to those delegates in Philadelphia in the days of my youth when another cantankerous, garrulous independent named John Adams could not hold back his wrath saying, “Piddle, twiddle and resolve.  When will it be done?”

I have been too long away from Philadelphia and its more genteel society to wish any one of them ill, but this should be the season to contemplate change.  Just as John Adams was pushing for the start of a revolution, I am also inclined to encourage revolutionary action.

It is a season to review lists, pay debts, collect outstanding balances that are due, and make resolutions.  These should include attempts to redress oversights and slights, receive inconvenienced or unreconciled relatives, improve one’s personal appearance, manners, station in life, or monetary situation and above all make more time for the things that are most fulfilling.  In short, it should be a time where dreams become reality.

Many of my dreams have come to fruition.  Most often that ripeness and maturity has been at a greater cost than I ever anticipated.  The cost has been in money, lost time, friendships, and pieces of my soul.  As yet another winter is passing, I take stock of my soul and find that it has a strength which for much I my life I thought it lacked.

So it is time to move forward with renewed strength and vigor into the wilds of nature and challenge the prevailing authority with news of change.  Nature will throw off whatever blanket it finds intolerable.  When nature becomes too hot, it will rid itself of even the most clinging garments.

I am on a path of collision with those who would not seek to preserve and protect the environment.  The colors and shades of belief are fast disappearing.  The issues become black and white.  They should be as white and clear as my Moon Garden! 

White Garden John Bartram Kirk R. Brown

Narcissus bloom again in spring in the Moon Garden

Either we choose to welcome a vibrant budding spring or we shall certainly lie exposed in a permanent bleak mid winter.  My choice is to go out and see how my garden is growing!  Blessings on your house and health and prosperity to your person.

2 responses

  1. As mid-winter comes upon us let us not forget that the light of day is longer and gains more strength after the winter solstice. This means we begin to renew. Ah, I wish we could all feel that way!

    • Given this season, in all its political dimensions, I feel that we are doing what we must with what we have! I am always encouraged when politicians talk about fiscal policy and risk management.

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