The holiday season is now in full swing. It brings with it the smells and sounds and sights that are designed to engage our nostalgia and be good consumers, floating the economy despite inflation. I always think of Tom Leher’s satirical song that goes,” Angels we have heard on high, telling us… go out and Buy!”, and we do just that.
Fortunately, my grown daughters do not look on spending as a sign of love and my grandson who is three today, and his brother who turns one next week, do not get lavished with too many gifts between these celebrations and Christmas. The three-year-old has been to two parties in his life and he knew exactly how he wanted to host his party down to the balloons, the dragon theme, and what kind of cupcakes (chocolate, in case you were wondering). Unfortunately, both Mama and Tat tested themselves today for COVID and sure enough, it was not a cold after all.
So, my grandson learned a new word- postpone. His party is postponed. And that is life these days. I made it to a family gathering for Thanksgiving and we were all glad that the worst thing that happened was discovering the baby is allergic to cashews as they were part of the delicious vegan meatloaf he so enjoyed. My nephew is a doctor and has done plenty of pediatric work. His neighbor is a pharmacist and knew the only drugstore in town that would be open at 8:00pm on Thanksgiving night. Baby Benadryl syrup did the trick, and he was fine the next morning with no more hives or swollen cheeks and lips. What better time and place to have discovered his allergy with medical assessment and assurance at hand.
But all gatherings are subject to postponement as the various viruses (don’t forget the old fashioned common cold) show up from one day or one participant to the next. We make plans knowing how likely it is that it may not pan out. It has always been so, but the sickness factor is so much more frequent and more likely to occur than it used to be. We are learning to live and be wary, enjoy what we can when we can because tomorrow who knows if we can meet safely again. Testing and masking and distancing for those of who do not consider it a political act has become the norm. My niece said she and her family got lots of glares for being masked as they flew in from Colorado.
Still, it is holiday time, a gathering time of family and friends, and an appropriate time to invest in hope for peace in our troubled world. Finding peace within myself is a daily priority.
Willow’s Way 10/21/22 Judi Bachrach
Prevailing breezes from the east collide
with billowing gusts from the west
conflicting fronts halting
the slow glide of fallen leaves
across the pond
amassing by the bank
Crisp new recruits
arriving every moment
form a ragged line
amidst countermanding currents
caught in the middle
quivering detachments on alert
On shore a thousand
willow thin branches
still dressed in dry green leaves
lift up hallelujahs
bow down in reverence whirlwind
tendrils alive in sympathy
with those that fall
anchored in the ground of being
our roots seek truth
renewed deep within
stark branches against the sky