Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Gifts -- Poem

Today is the Winter Solstice and also happens to be our Wedding Anniversary -- optimists to marry on the longest night of the year, right?

Many thanks to my "generous guy" for 55 years of happiness, and to all of you for enriching our lives with the gift of your friendship.


So many blessed gifts piled high,
shiny, bright, all aglitter,
They crown my life with blessings.
Let me count them...

A generous man with a kind heart,
Sweet kisses, and hot coffee every morning
Strong sons, and daughters bring
laughter, rich conversation, and warm pumpkin cake.

Nieces, nephews, cousins, family,
friends—near and far—all bless us
with applesauce cake, Christmas dresses,
bluegrass music, and visits in haunted dreams.

Precious words kindle enjoyment
Written in light, on screen or paper
Sweet as rich dark chocolate are words—
both my own and those of others.

Roast chicken, whole ham sausage, better health,
Smoked venison, key lime pie, sweet potatoes
served with laughter, courage,
and hopeful felines underfoot in the kitchen.

Each and every day is a gift, shiny, bright,
drifting down like snowflakes.
Some bring sorrow, loss of loved ones, pain,
yet each fulfills us, as it paints the world anew.

Thoughts upon the Winter Solstice, 2011
— Arline Chase


  1. Wonderful. We're only newlyweds at 46 years. For all the ups and downs of living, we're all lucky people to remain married through thick and thin.

  2. Thanks, CM. When we married, most people who knew us gave us six weeks at the outside, because we were very different, I liked to read, he liked hunting. But I had no doubts.

    I'd had two movie dates with him when he called me for a Saturday afternoon picnic. I said no, because Saturday was my chore day. Clean house and cut the grass (we had an acre of it and it would take most of the afternoon). He kept asking what was wrong and was I "breaking up with him?" Silly me, I hadn't even realized there was anything to "break up," yet. Finally I explained about my family commitments, hung up, and got busy.

    Half an hour later, he drove up and took a grass-cutter out of his trunk and without a word, started on the lawn. We have been working things out together ever since.

  3. Such a wonderful story, Arline! Thanks for sharing, and for the beautiful greeting. So wise and enriched. Love it :)

    Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  4. Would have been my 60th anniversary too. A lot of the same blessings for me too. Perfect way to say it all. Thank you for the poem. Mine have been less cheery--but maybe because they have been written after he was gone--except for this one:


    Brown is withered
    leaves on the fallow earth
    that shelter the warm dark
    to keep the worm warm
    & all that cluster near him.

    Brown is the eyes of my beloved,
    dark & steady
    flame & balm in their glance;
    it’s the tan on the hand
    that touches mine.

    Brown is the old,
    the city & knowledge,
    the ripeness of pears,
    of parchment & life
    lived long.

    The perfume of wood,
    the grain of the board
    that groans with the weight of our feast.
    Brown is the earth,
    the planks of our floor,
    the dark of our hearth
    when the flames have burned down
    & the shadows draw round
    & darken the days as they
    shorten to winter & cold.
    Brown is the cider, crisp on the tongue,
    savor of harvest & essence of home.