Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Contemplations on Christmas Eve

Contemplations on Christmas Eve

I wish I could be a child once more
And relive Christmases from before:
The enchantment in the twinkling lights,
The pleasure from all the merry sights,
Anticipation on Christmas Eve,
All the dreams my childish mind could weave.
I wish I could relive moments passed,
And clutch them tighter, to make them last.
Our tree towered so much larger then,
In those sweet days of “remember when,”
It’s smaller now, or perhaps I’ve changed.
The girl I was and I seem estranged,
Separated by so many years,
With such dissimilar dreams and fears.
I swore I’d never leave her behind,
But time can reshape and carve the mind.
Ev’rything’s transformed, and me as well,
Each sound, each sight, each place, and each smell.
We cannot go back to Manderley,
Whatever for each that place might be.
Time must go onward, and each life, too,
The world’s a stage; we must heed our cue.

~Stephanie Thompson, Christmas Eve, 2008

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"Passage—immediate passage! the blood burns in my veins! Away, O soul! hoist instantly the anchor!
Cut the hawsers—haul out—shake out every sail!
Have we not stood here like trees in the ground long enough?
Have we not grovell’d here long enough, eating and drinking like mere brutes?
Have we not darken’d and dazed ourselves with books long enough?

Sail forth! steer for the deep waters only!
Reckless, O soul, exploring, I with thee, and thou with me;
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go, And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all.

O my brave soul!
O farther, farther sail!
O daring joy, but safe! Are they not all the seas of God?
O farther, farther, farther sail!"

~Walt Whitman, "Passage to India"