Today is the birthday of my father’s little sister, Marian. It is also the anniversary of my grandfather’s death in 1990 and the day the ancient orthodox Armenian Church observes Christmas — except in Jerusalem, where the Brotherhood at the Monastery of St. James follows an older calendar and Christmas falls on a later date. In the dimly lit, incense-laden sanctuary of St. James itself, there is a nook where […]
Tag Archive for ‘Christmas’
James Baldwin: Collected Essays, in the fifteenth printing of the Library of America edition — a gift for Christmas from “The Kids.” At one-thirty in the morning, the sound of a raccoon climbing the fence near our bedroom window. Into the kitchen for a sip of water, the cold floor a comfort to my warm bare feet. Streetlights and a dusting of snow. December 26, 2021 . Early-Morning Streetlight For […]
“A Christmas Wish” first appeared on my website, I’m Telling You All I Know, in 2003. It has been borrowed and republished online numerous times, in various formats, on scrolls, in frames, or in plain text. It has even been used as a spoken interval in a symphonic musical program. As is inevitable, some versions are complete, others aren’t. In this way, the worldwide web is like a giant refrigerator […]
It really is a walk. Not a race, as many have come to believe. December 18, 2021 . It’s Still a Long Walk to Christmas I’m hidden away from holiday visitors, egg from plates wiped clean, crumbs up from counter brushed with efficient palm, frying pan still warm and slick upon the stove, potato peels filed away, scent of navel orange, morning paper rearranged according to topics best ignored. Outside, […]
A great many years ago, my mother accidentally dropped a copy of The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám out of the library window. About thirty years later, I saw it on my brother’s bookshelf. She’d inscribed it to him as a gift! . A Child’s Christmas Whence this peace falling into this upturned palm? . [ 970 ]
After two inches of rain, these lungs are best understood as sails, and this body a creaking, yet willing, ship — the air is that promising, that fresh, that clean. Seagulls on the city streets; the homeless, some just waking, others still asleep. The great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn — if these clouds persist, will Christmas still come? History changes with the wind. It is the wake of the […]
Ralph Waldo Emerson and William Wells Brown are both in Europe now, seeing the sights, meeting people, writing their observations and travel notes. One is a free man, wondering what freedom really is. The other is a fugitive, who knows what freedom is, or thinks he does. This leaves us to ask the reader of these two books if he knows. And he replies by saying that whatever he knows, […]
My mother writing Christmas cards, late into the night. The darkest time. The greatest light. December 6, 2019 A Thimbleful of Ash If you don’t eat your supper, Santa won’t visit us tonight. All the cookies will go to waste, the cards, the toys, the bows. A fire in the fireplace. The front door left unlocked. Somehow, Santa knows. On the porch, a stack of wood. Long lives, a […]
This gentle soul came into being this past Christmas Eve.
But of course he has always been with us.
And it’s not hard to believe he always will be,
Or to conceive that love, is all, we need.
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