By Suzanne M. Wolfe
These are dark times.
Here in the northern hemisphere the sun is at its lowest point in the sky; the winter solstice is still weeks away.
I’m sitting outside on my elderly mother’s kitchen step. I’ve come to England three times this year to take care of her. I came before and after her heart operation. A few weeks after I’d been home she fell and broke her elbow and so I’m back again.
My mother does not do well in the darkness of winter; she becomes agitated and depressed. As I look out at her garden, I see an objective correlative of her physical and mental state since the onset of her illness a year ago.
I see bare branches with a few shriveled leaves clinging to them, vibrating forlornly in the chill air sweeping south from Iceland. I see frost-burned grass and plants. The herbs I planted for her in the spring look dead.
I know that once our planet begins its ancient, slow tilt towards the sun again, all will be resurrected. I try to keep that in mind as I huddle on the steps, smoke a cigarette or two and pray for God’s mercy to my mother at the end of her life, pray that she will find peace and joy and beauty.
I pray that spring will come to a life spent mostly in deepest winter. [Read more…]