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Sunshine Blogger Awarding

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Sunshine Blogger Awarding

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Thank you, GiftedandChilling, for the nomination!  You should read her work, which is timely and spirited:

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https://giftedandchilling.wordpress.com/

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(her questions—)

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Here are the questions for my nominees! I tried to come up with a diverse range and hope you enjoy answering them. Her work is a treat for engagement.

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  1. What are you looking forward to in 2021?
  2. Who is your biggest inspiration and why?
  3. What is your favourite season and why?
  4. What was the last song you listened to?
  5. What is your blogging schedule?
  6. If you could change your blog’s niche, what would you change it to?
  7. What game show would you like to be a contestant in?
  8. Which fictional character annoys you the most?
  9. If you had a warning label, what would it say?
  10. What is your favourite thing about your career?
  11. How would you describe your perfect day?

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My responses—

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1 – I look forward to more living space because I’ll have relieved my life of hundreds of books I don’t need now and lots of household kinds of things will also have been donated.  I hope, with billions hoping, for enough of an end to the pandemic that we may have more normal lives.

2 – My younger siblings are especially accomplished.  I respect, and am inspired by, their strength and innovation.

3 – Fall is my favorite season.  The coolness and the colors.  The turn from summer.  Even the melancholy in the world as it starts to die or go to sleep is appealing.

4 – Probably a jazz song whose title I can’t recall.  I did watch Going My Way not so long ago and so heard several songs sung by Bing Crosby.

5 – I work on blogging first thing each day.  That is, I draft poetry until I think I might have something to post.  Then I look for an image to go with it.  Throughout this time I am having breakfast, which often goes cold through inattention.

6 – Well, the blog is poetry now.  And while I write about spiritual matters often, I wouldn’t mind having a blog in prose about spirituality, one that would have a great deal of interaction on basic but fundamental spiritual truths and questions.

7 – Jeopardy!

8 – Well, Hamlet’s pretty annoying.  (So is Lear.)  I mean, Hamlet’s supposed to make up his mind about doing something and then do it.  He’s a prince, a leader, and should be good at decisive action.  Admittedly, the stakes are huge and his life is on the line.  But he doesn’t seem to care much for his life or the lives of those he should care about, say, Ophelia.  Yes, the play would be shorter if we had last actions sooner.  Knowing what we know, though, would we mind a shorter play?

9 – “Still Waters”

10 – I learned how to interpret things, and think I do it well.  So when I get to deal in interpreting literature, say, as a college English teacher (which I’ve been), I think that’s pretty good, even fun.  When I’ve worked in churches, I’ve enjoyed conversations about faith, not because I think I own special revelation or anything but because I find faith sensible and many people don’t.

11 – I wake up not feeling an extra headache, and my tinnitus noise is down.  I have an enjoyable breakfast of croissants, coffee or tea, and juice.  In the morning, I write with energy.  Lunch is cheese and crackers and Coca-Cola.  In the afternoon, I drive to nowhere in particular but really to a bookstore or maybe two bookstores or three or four.  I find a few promising books to read and own.  Dinner could be out or in.  There should be some protein in it, and if someone else is there or I am in a public space then I may enjoyably have some beer or wine.  Good conversation in the evening would be ideal and then going to bed because I’m tired.

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Really fine questions—thank you!

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questions for me to ask—

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  1. How are you?
  2. What is something you want that you don’t have yet?
  3. What are you optimistic about?
  4. When you’re outside, what do you like to do?
  5. What is your main medium of expression?  Describe, please, an example of what you create.
  6. What is an important relationship in your life?
  7. What are you reading?  (or What were your reading?  or What do you want to read?)
  8. What has been an especially fine travel experience for you?
  9. Where would you like to go (budget notwithstanding, even though it is)?
  10. If you could make a wish—not a genie wish but one that works out all right—what would you wish for?
  11. What do you like about keeping a blog?

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I’m going to nominate bloggers I’ve recently gotten to know.  Please don’t feel pressed to participate, though it is an exercise that evokes reflection and gratitude.  I think I’m supposed to make pingbacks for the blog links of these folk, but I might not know how to do that.  Or know what pingbacks are.

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infoexposure: Find more, learn more

The Dog Training Blog

PhoebeMD: Medicine + Poetry

imnobodywhoareyou

Nine Cent Girl

lemanshots

1On1Wisdom

Clanmother

puppiesandpooches

ebonyandcrows

Colorful Sisters

Thank you for your inspiring work!

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Here are some rules and an image:

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About the Sunshine Blogger Award

The Sunshine Blogger Award is an award within the blogging community – given to bloggers by their peers. Those who are nominated, inspire and spread positivity through their blogs.

There are a few rules:

  • Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you and link back to their blog.
  • Answer 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and ask them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award in your post and/or on your blog.

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(near as I can tell, the rules are pretty universal–the award is in the nomination, so to say, so the process of nominating is the main transaction; images like the image below are easily found on line by typing a search such as “sunshine blogger award free images”)

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There are many image out there; I searched “sunshine blogger awards free images” and hopefully (as well as I could try to know) this image is (freely) available.

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C L Couch

(Christopher)

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Photo by Hector Marquez on Unsplash

Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

Last year I quit my job to travel around the world and I started learning about photography. I switched from sitting in front of a desk to sit in front of mountains. One destination that changed my life was Patagonia, I’ve never seen so much beauty around me. I was amazed how all the forces, elements, atoms on this universe come together to create beautiful things like this every day. I printed this image and have it hanging on my room to remind me the beautiful world we live in. I hope you like it as much as I like it.

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The Uniform Monday Holiday Act

(x = space)

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The Uniform Monday Holiday Act

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I can’t imagine

How it is

To be imprisoned, innocent

Martin Luther King, Junior

The apostles Peter and Paul

Henry David Thoreau

Doctor Mudd for setting

Booth’s leg

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These people were indicted

For their jobs

Nelson Mandela

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Now there are the women

I should know more and say more

Suffragers

Protesters

Wanting votes

A real wage

A chance for the machines

Not to grind our living down

In a new age

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There are those in rank

I do not understand

Women, children, men

Who lived in prison in the Tower

Sometimes freed

Often executed

Often simply dying there

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There are crimes, I’m sure

Prison sentences

That might make sense

If bankrupt of compassion,

The strength of prohibition

And correction misdirected

And I don’t know

What to say for those

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We’ve decided for our lives

To keep you away from them,

From everyone

Who lives under the sun

Or the comfort of moonlight

At night

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Civil disobedience

A cause

A call

Evangelism

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C L Couch

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between his birthday and the holiday

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Photo by Richard Payette on Unsplash

Catalonia, Spain

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What We Will

(x = space)

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What We Will

(6 January)

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I don’t have anything

For you, but

There is this:

There is a story

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It is winter, now;

We have passed Twelfth Night,

The yule log is expiring

In the manor home,

Epiphany will have

Its celebrations;

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Winter, then, will be

Full upon us

In the north;

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And it will be, between

Any festivals, such a

Good time for stories

And storytellers

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Who should be invited

Then blessed on their way

To comfort others in

diverse ways.

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Should there be no tellers

At hand, then we must

Become them—every group

Has a story,

After all;

And if yours has none to tell,

Then write it

(there will be a text

for now, for later on)

And then tell it:

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Hear it, everyone!

In the north, it is

Such a good time for this.

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C L Couch

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Photo by Lance Anderson on Unsplash

Akron, United States

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Inaugurations

(x = space)

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Inaugurations

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January enters

Like a wet

Dog,

Poor dog

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Winter is

Allowed

But the ground

In PA is

Spring or

Fall swamp-like

Instead with

Additional on the

Way (which

means more

rain)

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Four-year change

Is coming, not

A holiday

I wonder

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But something

In the USA

We do so that

Change

Keeps things

The same

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Not that we

Are the

Exemplar

We believe we are

Or

Should be

To the world

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What do you know?

A real dog is

Barking, below

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Go inside,

Dog,

Go

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Leave certain

Things

Outside to

The oath-owners

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C L Couch

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Go, Dog, Go is a story (about dogs) written by P. D. Eastman.

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Photo by Victoria Palacios on Unsplash

Sequoia National Forest, United States

Glory and wonder here on little old earth. This shot is from a particularly magical hike through the Sequoia National Forest. We were so up high in the mountains that the clouds decided to settle around us and create a mystical fog all around us.

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3 brief poems for the new year

3 brief poems for the new year

(x = space)

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May I Sell You a Machine?

(end of December)

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According to commercials

At this time of year,

We should be losing weight

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Grinding on exercise machines,

Finding our food in a box,

Engaging meditation maybe

Thirty seconds, maybe

Less

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I suppose the box companies

Are doing well

And companies that make

Machines—I wonder

That machines are always doing well

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We lose weight,

They weigh us down

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Contemporarities

(2021)

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God, help us in new years

Whenever they begin

In calendars,

In life

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When someone dies,

When someone comes to life

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Because she or he is born,

Because there is a return

To life

After pain, as she says

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When the formal feeling comes

And something after

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Our Sci-Fi Lives

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Now is the science-fiction time,

Far enough into

The twenty-first century

That we may have some expectations

For reverse magnetism

And anti-gravity

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For cities in the air and mining solely

By machines, enough that humans

Have jobs again

In new alliances

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But we know how to fix it, at least

I hope we do,

The Earth that we have harmed;

And when we go, the missions we take

With us will not harm

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C L Couch

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I was a suburban kid but grew up in or near mining and steel-making country.  And our city fell apart when the industries fell apart.  If they could come back in local and safe ways, I should be relieved and very glad.

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After great pain, a formal feeling comes –

The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs –

The stiff Heart questions ‘was it He, that bore,’

And ‘Yesterday, or Centuries before’?

. . .

Emily Dickinson

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Photo by Fabrício Severo on Unsplash

Saint Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Bishop Street, The Lough, Cork, Irlanda

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A Domesday Counting

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A Domesday Counting

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It’s a count of calendars:

For some, the year

Has started with Advent

Or the solstice

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There is the Jewish calendar

(look at the cornerstones

of buildings),

The Islamic calendar,

And the Chinese calendar

That will incite fireworks

As well

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There are those who count

The days by weather

And the local seasons

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We’ll watch and listen to

The fireworks in Sydney;

We’ll note the islands

Near Fiji where

The dateline says

The new year starts

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All of our computers will

Tell us that it’s started

Not to mention resolutions

And all the sauerkraut

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Which is to say

The new year is relative;

It is traditional

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C L Couch

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Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash

Year 2021 Is Coming

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Domesday Book : Britain’s finest treasure | The National …

www.nationalarchives.gov.uk › domesday

Domesday [The Domesday Book] is Britain’s earliest public record. It contains the results of a huge survey of land and landholding commissioned by William I in 1085.

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Remembering 28 December

(x = space)

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Remembering 28 December

(in liturgies)

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Yesterday there was a lesser feast about

The slaughter of the innocents

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Frankly, I don’t know how to bring

It up, the murder of many children or

The killing of one child

Two years old or younger

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How does one speak to that?

How does one do it, in the first place?

The answer is, one doesn’t

But tells soldiers and slaves to do it

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The children are only

Targets, after all, unreal as people

If we never look at them

Or what we commanded

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Being Idumean,

Herod might even have considered this

An act of war against

An enemy Jewish people

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But we are right to say

That it was local genocide,

Even of boys the

Killing of a generation

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Foes from which there would be

No reprisal,

No fighting back would be

Expected

And thus a tactically successful

Maneuver and campaign

Designed by a crazy person who

Had the kind of power

Democracy should slay

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God would address the Herods

Later on:

You don’t really think

Herod and his would

Get away with murderous

Abrogations?

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We cannot count the children;

We do not count them now,

Though so many

Live inside danger

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They are not wood or cardboard—they

Are not shades behind

A chain-link fence or

A craftier, a solid-seeming barrier

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They starve, they bleed,

They cry as a divine signal

To the rest of us

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Listen to them, see to them—in this,

The parents are the world—and

Then we can rightly damn

All Herodian kings

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C L Couch

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Photo by insung yoon on Unsplash

Saemangeum-ro, Gunsan-si, South Korea

Solar Eclipse

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Matthew 2:16-18

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Acts 12:20-23

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According to documents and legends, Herod the Great and Herod Agrippa (grandson) both died lingering and painful deaths.

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On a Colorless Land

(x = space)

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On a Colorless Land

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That’s the problem with winter,

Isn’t it?

Everything is pale, unless

It’s dark with age

Or even death,

Blasted trees and such

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Snow is romantic

While it’s falling,

But if the temperatures stay low

Then the ground is white snow or,

Well, ground

For a long while

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There is no solution;

Painting earth won’t help

And what of the limpid winter sky?

Besides, there’s learning here

Via looking out,

Remembering that colors all are

Grand and

We should cherish them and use them

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I know, pretty straightforward

For a poem;

But I was thinking about

Recessive traits:

I have freckles on pale skin,

Blue eyes,

Left-handedness,

All sorts of other things, I’m sure

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For these, I don’t think

I’m worthless

Or you for your recessives

Or you for your dominants

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We can (all) have bold things,

Brings the colors in—

Keep them inside in other ways

Along with textures and

Unearthly sounds

And bell-like laughter

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The senses are bright

And always so

As we might manage them

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Taste and see,

Hear and touch,

Smell—and time be released

For these

(from time to time)

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I don’t know about a wonderful life,

But it can be

And more so

A sensate life

In any season

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C L Couch

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Photo by Steve Johnson on Unsplash

Mixed media painting inspired by Stonehenge.

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The Magician’s Children

(x = space)

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The Magician’s Children

(Christmas 2020)

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It’s a magic time

The animals will talk at midnight

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Light of many colors

Will shine inside and outside

Of hours

And tall buildings in the city

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People who don’t believe

Will be quiet for a while

Almost in honor of the child

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Christmas might be

A chore for them,

But they take the quiet anyway,

Until the noises of the morning

In the household begin

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And there are those who will be quiet

Because they are the only ones,

Each one in a home of sorts

To bring in the day

On one’s own

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Each one has a job

To send out the peace

Just beyond, until the next one

Take it,

Send it out in thought or feeling

Or a prayer

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Others will be so busy

But the lonely could do this

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Create a spirit-band across the world

Through many places,

Many nations,

Many destinations

That can’t be reached yet

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Someday, perhaps

When we have enough health,

Enough determination,

Enough interest in the risk

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Merry Christmas to each one

And from each to everyone

Live in peace for a day

And remember that a day

Can be an age

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C L Couch

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Photo by Daniil Silantev on Unsplash

Ozero Turgoyak, Челябинская область, Россия

Ice on the Lake Turgoyak

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