Archive for the ‘The Shortest Day’ Tag

So the shortest day came . . .   3 comments

Solstice Sunset — Image by kenne

So the shortest day came, and the year died,
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive,
And when the new year’s sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us—Listen!!
All the long echoes sing the same delight,
This shortest day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Welcome Yule!

— Susan Cooper

The Shortest Day   Leave a comment

Hunters in the Snow– painting by Pieter Bruegel the Eider

As we experience the shortest day of the year, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s painting, “Hunters in the Snow,” is an almost perfect picture of the contrasting scenes we experience this time of year, depicting isolation and melancholy producing a sense that we are being pulled into a silent landscape where the deep drifts of snow where you can “feel the cold and sense the audible dullness as the landscape sucks the sound from every little human vignette.” 

His paintings are beautiful because his compositions make one of the opposites, based on Eli Siegel’s principle of aesthetic realism: “All beauty is a making one of opposites, and the making of one of the opposites is what we are going after in ourselves.”

opposites are one

composing yesteryear’s coldness

stretching through time

standing still in the moment
 

searching the unrestricted

working with opposites

reassuring in sameness
 

emphasizing divergence

promising order

pleasing to self

— kenne

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