May this season of giving be a bright one. I wish you all the joy your heart can handle.
I've made a tradition of writing a poem for Christmas each year and, when my mother asked if I was writing one this year (among all that we've had going on) I wasn't about to disappoint her.
About this year’s poem: When I was young, I asked where frost and snow came from. My brother offered a scientific explanation but my father offered something magical that has remained with me all my life. Dad told me a story of a faerie named Jack who used a beautiful brush to paint the world in shimmering pearls and diamonds... This poem is for you Daddy. Thank you for the magic and maybe Jack will lend you his paintbrush for a while.
Once Upon a Winter Wind
A blanket fell from a quiet night sky as the December cold came in a rush.
No one in the city saw as old Jack Frost picked up his brush.
He’d blown in with a winter wind and strolled into a neighborhood
curious to see what he would find – a place of suffering or a world of good.
He first looked into a Christmas window full of color, warmth and light
and with quick strokes from soft bristles, he framed the glass in crystal white.
Happily hopping from fir to pine, he weighed their pretty boughs with snow.
He’d traveled quite a distance when his instincts warned that he should slow.
Aware of shadows beneath the bridge, he turned and trudged through overgrown grass
past empty vials and old newspapers – past arguments and broken glass.
Clearly Jack saw the evidence of stark hunger, pain and sorrow
and painting it all in an azure blue, he prayed for a better tomorrow.
Sitting atop an ancient oak, he toyed with a leaf as he gazed below.
He thought how strange the humans were who move so fast but learn so slow.
He hoped that by some miracle his icy art might stop the spin –
that peace and love might win the day if all of everyone were snowed in.
And as he mused, he watched a child pull a wagon loaded down
with bags and boxes full of food as she headed into town.
He followed as she made her way through his cold without a care
and climbed the stair and rang the bell and handed out her wares.
Jack could see she didn’t linger at any particular door
and overheard her say at one that she wished she could give more.
He stayed beside the little girl, blushing her cheeks with a chilly kiss
and knew that after he moved on she’d be the one he’d miss.
She’d be the symbol of his hope as he traveled through the night –
that given time and a bout of patience, the humans could get it right.
When morning woke with a splash of color, the light sparkled off the snow
and with the last stroke of his brush, Jack knew it was time to go.
Throughout that winter he’d return to walk with the little girl,
intending to cleanse with ice and snow all the worries of the world.
~ Letitia E. Minnick, Christmas 2011