The Winter Solstice is nearly here, the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. For centuries out of time, people have celebrated this sacred festival of earth and sun, a special day shared by all inhabitants of this planet, no matter what other spiritual or religious beliefs may divide us.
Here is a powerful poem by author Susan Cooper that reminds us of the beauty of the Yuletide season. May it bring a bit of joy and hope to all our hearts. Read the poem here:
The Shortest Day
By Susan Cooper
And 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, revelling.
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 now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
By Susan Cooper.