Feast of the Epiphany

A contemporary artist, Jan Richardson, has imagined the Magi as Three Wise Women:

wisewomenalsocame by Jan Ricjhardson



on the tip of the tongue of the year

Wales online

January in Wales     photo from Wales online


“In the sniffed and poured snow on the tip of the tongue of the year
That clouts the spittle like bubbles with broken rooms,
An enamoured man alone by the twigs of his eyes, two fires,
Camped in the drug-white shower of nerves and food,
Savours the lick of the times through a deadly wood of hair
In a wind that plucked a goose,
Nor ever, as the wild tongue breaks its tombs,
Rounds to look at the red, wagged root.”

–  Dylan Thomas, January, 1939


New Years Eve

Inge Look Happy New Year

I like this one!   My friends and I surely don’t look this old, but still…


Someone has said that ghosts walk at Christmas, and during the week between the old and new year I think of how many I know.

I also ponder the mystery of Time.  There’s a wonderful short story by Borges called “The Garden of Forking Paths”  in which one of the main characters says this to the other:

“…In  contrast  to  Newton  and  Schopenhauer, your ancestor did not believe in a uniform, absolute time. He believed in an infinite series of times, in a growing, dizzying net of divergent, convergent and parallel times. This network of times which approached one another,  forked,  broke  off,  or  were  unaware  of  one  another  for  centuries,  embraces all  possibilities  of  time.  We  do  not  exist  in  the  majority  of  these  times; in some you exist, and not I; in others I, and not you; in others, both of  us.  In  the  present  one,  which  a  favorable  fate  has  granted  me,  you  have  arrived  at  my  house;  in  another,  while  crossing  the  garden,  you  found  me  dead; in still another, I utter these same words, but I am a mistake, a ghost.”

That may be incomprehensible, taken out of context, but I like it.

Garden of Forking Paths maze


On the sixth day of Christmas

“my true love gave to me….six geese a -laying…”

six geese


the 12 Days of Christmas which begins on Christmas and ends on Jan. 6, the traditional Feast of the Epiphany. Here is the information from Wikipedia:

“Little Christmas (Irish: Nollaig na mBan, lit. ‘Women’s Christmas’), also known as Old Christmas, is one of the traditional names among Irish Christians and Amish Christians for 6 January, which is also known more widely as the Feast of the Epiphany, celebrated twelve days after Christmas Day. It is the traditional end of the Christmas season and until 2013 was the last day of the Christmas holidays for both primary and secondary schools in Ireland.”


Christmas in Madison Square Paul Cornoyer

Christmas in Madison Square     Paul Cornoyer


The Christmas Tree is a tree of fable


Christmas tree and fireplace

Happy Christmas to all!


Here’s a great poem by C. Day Lewis:

The Christmas Tree

Put out the lights now!
Look at the Tree, the rough tree dazzled
In oriole plumes of flame,
Tinselled with twinkling frost fire, tasseled
With stars and moons—the same
That yesterday hid in the spinney and had no fame
Till we put out the lights now.

Hard are the nights now:
The fields at moonrise turn to agate
Shadows as cold as jet;
In dyke and furrow, in copse and faggot
The frost’s tooth is set;
And stars are the sparks whirled out by the north wind’s fret
On the flinty nights now.

So feast your eyes now,
On mimic star and moon-cold bauble;
Worlds may wither unseen,
But the Christmas Tree is a tree of fable,
A phoenix in evergreen,
And the world cannot change or chill what its mysteries mean
To your heart and eyes now.

The vision dies now
Candle by candle: the tree that embraced it
Returns to its own kind,
To be earthed again and weather as best it
May the frost and the wind.
Children, it too had its hour—you will not mind
If it lives or dies now.



tree in conservatory at Longwood Gardens 2019