Since the nights have grow longer and darker so have the shadowy ghosts of the passing year. Wishes once dreamt up somehow disappeared sliding down the back of the chair, issues between friends only half thought out got scrunched up and ended up in an overlooked pocket. That set aside time for me always somehow got interrupted. When such things get overlooked and shoved aside, hidden and ignored it can take us further and further from the true path of ourselves.
Such ghosts emerge at this time of year, weave themselves together like a thick glutinous scarf that feels too tight and strangling. But this is all my doing and it’s the winter’s darkness which calls them out. I can no longer ignore then these unresolved things, although I do my best to hide them they are old familiars…
As we cycle around to the shortest day with the earth in it’s furthest position from the sun, appearing as far south as it ever journeys I feel a deepening need to somehow deal with these ghosts. The solstice offers us a chance of rebirth, of looking at everything anew, another chance. Today’s darkness after all is tomorrows light.
Yesterday I headed out to the woods to build a small fire but all I could feel was this gaping hole, brimming with anger, frustration and disappointment. I felt like crying, but no release came. I lay down in down in the snow. The tall trees swayed above me and I felt wrapped up in a deep silence. With the heat slowly draining from my body, I let go.
I will try again today to light that fire – whither it’s a candle or the wood stove and I will name a few of these things that haunt me. Some I will make promises to attend to; others I will throw into the fire and let them burn as they throw up sparks of protest high into the sky. But most of all I will acknowledge what I want from life, consider what qualities I need to start me off on that path and plot a map – scratched out on a piece of paper. I’ll make several copies, one to keep in the side pocket of my boot, one to keep up my sleeve, another I’ll hid in my hair and a few others dotted around so I won’t loose my plan!
So as the warming spiced apple shakes off the days chill I raise my mug to the rebirth of the sun. The Oak king reigns again! The spirit of Yule is within each other, the friendships we share to make it through the darkness.