Monday, December 22, 2008

To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under the sun

I was going to start this post by saying something about how winter is a time of reflection, but then I realized I say that same thing about spring and autumn. Never summer, though. Summer is a time for enjoying life, for celebrating light and warmth and yes, baseball. Winter? Maybe winter is not so much a season of reflection, but a season of longing. I still haven't found a person who is enjoying this bitter ten degree weather, which seems to have strangled the whole country at this point. Even in DC it is painfully cold, not something I tend to associate with DC winters, though I admit being from Ohio, I tend to exaggerate the mildness of DC winters because of the contrast. Forty is cold when you've been in DC for five years.

Yesterday we hit the solstice, a day that I celebrate in my head, because I know that every day that passes after that until my second favorite day of the year (the first being Opening Day) has a little more light than the previous day. As I am prone to reflection and to notice beauty in little things, I have to say that one of my favorite times of year is that moment towards the end of January when it suddenly occurs to you that the days ARE getting longer. It is immediately followed by an agonizingly long run of several weeks which are the coldest of the year, but at least there is that light, and with light comes hope and the promise of renewal and rebirth. Then - spring.

Oh, the little things that tell you you're getting closer! The February rains. Pitchers and catchers reporting to Spring Training. Windbreakers on sale in the store windows. Then, those tiny green sprouts that appear across the natural world, the sight of which can make one's heart explode with joy even as he dons his black overcoat and carries his black umbrella and walks beneath a dull gray sky.

But - we are far from spring, one day removed, in fact, from the first day of winter. Yet spring seems like it is just around the corner, for we as a nation face a rebirth of the greatest proportions. This is our time to plant new roots and our time to pluck up that which has been planted over centuries. This is our time, our season, a new generation not grown with seeds of hatred and intolerance but with an enlightenment of a sort. It is our time to heal, to laugh, to dance, to speak up, speak out.

It is our time for peace.

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