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Archive for the ‘timothy’ Category

Toward the Winter Solstice

Although the roof is just a story high,

It dizzies me a little to look down.

I lariat-twirl the cord of Christmas lights

And cast it to the weeping birch’s crown;

A dowel into which I’ve screwed a hook

Enables me to reach, lift, drape, and twine

The cord among the boughs so that the bulbs

Will accent the tree’s elegant design.

Friends, passing home from work or shopping, pause

And call up commendations or critiques.

I make adjustments. Though a potpourri

Of Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Jews, and Sikhs,

We all are conscious of the time of year;

We all enjoy its colorful displays

And keep some festival that mitigates

The dwindling warmth and compass of the days.

Some say that L.A. doesn’t suit the Yule,

But UPS vans now like magi make

Their present-laden rounds, while fallen leaves

Are gaily resurrected in their wake;

The desert lifts a full moon from the east

And issues a dry Santa Ana breeze,

And valets at chic restaurants will soon

Be tending flocks of cars and SUVs.

And as the neighborhoods sink into dusk

The fan palms scattered all across town stand

More calmly prominent, and this place seems

A vast oasis in the Holy Land.

This house might be a caravansary,

The tree a kind of cordial fountainhead

Of welcome, looped and decked with necklaces

And ceintures of green, yellow, blue, and red.

Some wonder if the star of Bethlehem

Occurred when Jupiter and Saturn crossed;

It’s comforting to look up from this roof

And feel that, while all changes, nothing’s lost,

To recollect that in antiquity

The winter solstice fell in Capricorn

And that, in the Orion Nebula,

From swirling gas, new stars are being born.

-Timothy Steele

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