Equators in my writing . . .
Today I was having tea with a friend who recited a poem she’d learned years ago. A line stayed with me: “I want equators in my writing”.
I am wrapping up the Wabi-Ware Winter Solstice and holiday custom cards and have been musing about how, with Earth’s tilt and revolution around our Sun, the day’s light is always in shift.
A few weeks ago a friend in Sydney wrote to say the jacaranda trees were in bloom. Australia is facing the Summer Solstice, while here in Fort Collins, Colorado we just received a thick blanket of snow with more on the way tomorrow. Because of Earth’s tilt, the Southern Hemisphere is now closer to our Sun and receiving more light for their long summer days. In contrast, we in the Northern Hemisphere are getting colder and darker until the longest night (or shortest day) at the Winter Solstice Dec. 21-22.
In September, at the Autumn equinox here (and Spring equinox in Sydney), the Sun crosses that imaginary belt around the middle of Earth – the equator. At that time, the days and nights are almost equal; but, as autumn progresses, the days here get shorter and shorter. I see it in the increasing shadows of trees on the snow, the cats seek the western ledges for the brief afternoon warmth of Sun, and the night arrives too soon.
Winter Solstice is a special time – it is a season of reflection, what we, ironically, call the season of light, although it is our darkest time. Making Wabi-Ware custom greeting cards to evoke some of the qualities of Winter Solstice, I reflect on Earth’s suspension in the vast Cosmos, Earth’s yearly revolution around our Sun, and the stillness of the season of dark. I make cards with candles representing the menorah lights of Hanukkah. And I include glitter and bright colors for trees and bright stars and candles for Christmas cards. The Wabi-Ware handmade solstice cards have swirls to represent the solar system with little icons of Earth riding along. Or I use gold and black paper and glitter as symbols of light and dark.
A dear friend who is a community health nurse in Canada was just posted for a month above the Arctic Circle to a place called Old Crow. There, she says, they have a sliver of light to remind them of daytime before the darkness folds in again. Her husband said the big advantage of being there now is they are very close to the North Pole! While it is mostly 24 hours of darkness in Old Crow during the winter, Gail said they have magnificent shows of Northern lights – the Aurora borealis in the North (and there is Aurora australis in the South).
Now that the Winter Solstice has nearly arrived, and the Wabi-Ware custom greeting cards are either all in the stores or in the mail, I am musing about making cards that reflect (in many ways) the shimmering essence of the Northern Lights. So, to Gail and Ed and Santa way above the Arctic Circle, and to all our friends near and far, north and south – All Good Things as we move through space around our bright Sun and begin yet another year. We’ll just keep moving: The days will gradually grow longer as our Sun seems to shift from south to north, dancing, once again, across the equator.