Monday, December 16, 2013

Merry Christmas!
by John Keller
Where you live now there may be snow for Christmas.  Beautiful, gentle snow.  There may be snow in your home town too.  Covering the Railroad Station and laying a soft coverlet over the bandstand and the cars along Washington Street.  There may be hills in our home town where kids still go sledding.
Our home town in winter c. 1890

But there will never be a Christmas as magical, nor snow as magnificent as that which we experienced as children.  The poet Dylan Thomas put it this way:

 "... But that was not the same snow," I say. "Our snow was not only shaken from white wash buckets down the sky, it came shawling out of the ground and swam and drifted out of the arms and hands and bodies of the trees; snow grew overnight on the roofs of the houses like a pure and grandfather moss, minutely-ivied the walls and settled on the postman, opening the gate, like a dumb, numb thunder-storm of white, torn Christmas card ...”
~ "A Child's Christmas in Wales" - Dylan Thomas (excerpt)

But whether you have snow or not, whether your weather is warm or cold, Christmas will be special.  For it is a time when one's throat gets thick with the memories of parents and loved ones who are no longer with us.  It is a time of rich and brilliant colors and of embracing, nearly-forgotten, smells and melodies.  It is a time to reconnect with old friends and far-off family. 

But most of all Christmas is a time of child-like wonder, of renewal and hope.  For in that little child's eyes we see another child that still plays in our own hearts.  We see the little boy or girl who tip-toed down the staircase on a magical Christmas morning, in our home town many, many years ago.  We see the arc of our lives and the continuity of life.
Merry Christmas, Everyone!  Peace on Earth, Good Will to All!

Our R.R. Station cupola

[NOTE: John Keller, one of my high school classmates, has been faithfully tending our Class Weblog since shortly after we celebrated our fiftieth High School Class reunion now more than four years ago. He has done this quietly and beautifully without fanfare and without getting the full recognition I believe he deserves. This Christmas piece struck me as distinguished ––particularly touching, heartfelt and sweet-natured. I asked John for permission to share it with others. Happily he granted my request. ~ FreeThinke]





3 comments:

  1. What a beautiful piece of writing! So eloquent and so meaningful!

    there will never be a Christmas as magical, nor snow as magnificent as that which we experienced as children

    True enough. We can't really go home again -- except in our hearts and in our imagination.

    However, this Christmas 2013 is turning into a magical one for the AOW household because of Decorate A Vet and the gathering that we attended yesterday. We each received a Christmas surprise at the gathering. Most important, we enjoyed fellowship. For a few hours, Mr. AOW and I forgot our grief: we had received news of the passing of one of our dearest friends and contemporaries the night before the gathering.

    This year, we in the D.C. area have even had a pre-Christmas snowfall (although mow of it is now gone and Christmas Day itself will likely be balmy for this area).

    No matter the balmy weather that's coming! We don't need snow to make Christmas magical. Besides, even if a Christmas isn't magical, it's still Christmas and special in its own right.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm sorry that I've been absent! Thank you for the kind words over at Christian Fearing God-man.

    I hope you have a Merry Christmas, and I wish you all the best holiday cheer.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I think John Keller has captured something and expressed the idea excellently. There is a difference in the way Christmas is experienced as we grow older and I hadn't seen it expressed this way before.

    Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete

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