Sunday, December 25, 2005

Twas' the Evening of Solstice

Twas the evening of solstice, when all through the tribe,
Not a creature was stirring, not even the scribe.
While others were busy, driving their cars,
Faithful old pagans, were viewing earth’s star.

In a field out in Amherst, in ice, stone and snow,
We’d gathered and waited amid stones we would know.
When up on the ice, there rose such a clatter
We turned to the center, to see what was the matter,

She was booted and hatted, and holding a broom,
Speakers, and candles, and umbrella of moons.
“Gather good pagans, in the sunwheel of stone,
Where solstice and sun, mark winter’s full bloom.”

The sun dropped a notch, And further she spake,
Of her words and her waving, much one could make.
“The sun arcs the lowest, this shortest of days,
The sun seems the stillest, from our earthly gaze.”

Our feet were quite frozen, as we slipped and we played,
Watching our shadows, past sun’s fading rays.
Then came the time, when sun lit the rink,
Orange stone setting, past purple and pink.

We all rested quiet as sun slipped away,
Secure in belief of return the next day.
We raised up our flasks, libations we drank,
We clapped in the sunwheel, to send up our thanks.

The priestess spun round with twinkle and wink,
“The solstice makes sense, if only you think.
Come back for the moon, it rises tonight.
“Happy Solstice to all, and to all a good night.”

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Worth Twenty Thousand?

"Twenty Thousand" is a modern O'Henry, a "Gift of the Magi" set in 2005. An impoverished mother with toddler and infant, drives the snowy NH Turnpike in a desperate trip to beg money from her parsimonious husband at his National Guard station. With her last dollar, a coin of great sentivmental value, she pays the toll. When the couple try to retrieve the old coin, the toll collector won't give it up.

The husband blames his wife for losing it. "You shouldn’t have spent it."

This story appeared in The New Yorker this week, and I have not been able to find it online. Good luck, its a great story.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Better Know a Pol

I've adapted perfectly modern political life! I watch the Daily Show and the Colbert Report and I have memorized the names of all the Senators, finding that three states are represented exclusively by women -- I did want to participate in the legislature in my own day.


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Checking In To The Library?

Most people check out of the library. Well today I checked in at the Jones Library.

Emily Dickinson scholars head straight to Special Collections where my best bits are archived. I am working on a "Big Trees" project, which would make some of the living giants in Amherst, Sunderland, Hatfield, etc, like little doorways onto an earlier time.

Tevis and Kate overwhelmed me with special catalogs, indices, bibliographies, microfiches, books, journals, manuscripts and ephemera relating to local history. The Amherst Bulletin and its antecedents are indexed to 1776!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Called Back

I would like to thank the wonderful people who maintain the Dickinson family plot in Amherst. And to whomever left the little yellow bird on the tree --- thank you!

I am overwhelmed and flattered, too, by the attention paid to me by the 'bloggers' --- whose company, by the good graces of Clarissa, I have joined.

I enjoy the speculation on whether I would have been a blogger in the 1850's .. such a thought when we barely had electricity! Back then, the telegraph, dear readers, was our internet! But I am here, now, and writing again.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

I Have Returned

It has been some time, dear readers, since my birth, December 10, 1830. One hundred seventy five years is not a blink, yet it is not so very long ago. I was so touched by the wonderful birthday celebrations yesterday. What wonderful roses! Thank you, devotees. I hope you are all pleased that I have finally come home.

After the festivities Clarissa, a dear dear friend of Lavinia's, who keeps up with the times, described to me the modernities that have come to pass in the hundred or so, well, hundred and nineteen years since my passing. From Edison to Gates --- yes, it is a new age! A Renaissance, and I am drawn to it.