|This gnarled apple tree still stands in what remains |
of the orchard once owned by my grandparents
Our souls can dive into the biting cold, into darkness,
into bare being. The unknown is there…
Winter is a womb in which we grow.2
Due to occupational infirmities, as I approached the age of 50, I went back to school to learn an inside profession, dealing with the trauma we inflict on each other and the world.
Since then, my solstice reveries have been increasingly buffeted by sadness and grief at the state of our world, steeped in suffering, injustice, and climate crisis – caused not by some alien devil but our own selfish and small-minded actions.
My feelings resonate with those of the Episcopal Priest, Tish Harrison Warren: looking honestly at the darkness connects us to an “almost cosmic ache: our deep, wordless desire for things to be made right and the incompleteness we find in the meantime.”3
As I sit musing by my woodstove this solstice, I have no magic wand to awaken the world – and each one of us – to a higher standard of ethics, justice, and good behavior.
I am left with only what I’ve always had: my sense of place and the changing of the seasons.