Showing posts from December, 2016

In The Middle Of The Winter Feast

On the fourth day of Christmas her true love gives to her: ‘Four German Men Three Finch Hens Toowoo Twurtle Doves And A Part Of A Pear Tree’ But to the dearth of our amusement Grandchild 2 finds a book detailing the traditional 12 gifts and begins to teach herself the proper form. Not so proper she can’t slink off with all the cherry tomatoes. If questioned, we know it was not Grandad. She says it anyway, laughing. Grandchild 5 can follow the others with her eyes, she wants to be up to mischief like the others say they are not.  Grandchild 1 kicks a football onto the grass he is not supposed to run on because… something about mud… if he asks Grandchild 3 to fetch for him he has contravened no carpet law!  It’s not his fault we were all listening. And where’s Grandchild 4? Not hitting anyone with a stick of course - that was Dog, he says. It’s not his fault we were all watching. Grandchild 3 casually drops a stick behind her back. But we’re

Yule Tale 2016

A Slightly Parallel Cinderella Once upon a time and place, in a slightly parallel universe (for further reading on slightly parallel universe theory please refer to Dr Cod’s excellent Physics For Storytellers ) all children were hatched and raised for adoption.  They were named in themes, and Cinderella was hatched during a craze for old fashioned, gender orientated, Disney character names.  She was adopted by a spacious mansion full of fabulous toys. She ate fabulous food. She took fabulous pictures of it all and posted them on her social media. From that she made her two bestest-ever-friends-forever, Lady and Tramp. They each lived in toy packed mansions, maybe if anything a little bit more fabulous than Cinderella’s lavish life but they were good enough to apologise and repeatedly tell her that it was okay not to have the biggest and best all of the time, they would still like her pictures and she mustn’t feel bad about herself, she wasn’t unloveable or

A Candle Lit

We live by the light of those we love, whether they are here or gone. That light is inextinguishable. To have the light and not the company is an adjustment process we call grief. Loss is a shadow, equal to the light. We adjust not to lose the shadow but to see both. Hard to bear - yet without darkness, light cannot show its full wonder. Let us look after each other, then, and value our days, our company, and live to leave vast shadows, and understand that pain is a strange gift, a tender, haunting, purposed gift. And if you are grieving: let your tears flow, let your anger shout, let yourself plead and deny and feel terrible: it is not an easy process.  Know that other people know grief.  Know that other people are hurt to see you grieve.  Know that love is a fundamental response. There is no time limit to this adjustment process. No right or wrong way to feel. One day you will stand back and see that the shadow is proof to the strength of the light, a


Last night we tumbled first into wine, then sleep. We had watched fabulous things on our television, our dreams were amazing. I evolved legs to crawl from the bed.  Yesterday was a Thursday, and the first calendar day of winter. She had swept in, draped with rich mist, strong and archetypal. How could we not celebrate? This morning, the sun still sunk below an unseeable horizon, Dog goes out, crunches crystals under footpads. Our dead ash tree, scheduled to be cut down twelvemonth before, is a bold statement in a world of miniature wonders.  Do you know we don’t actually have a television? We bought a projector, we have a blank wall.  It makes watching a deliberate thing. Sometimes we drink wine on a weeknight but we are careful viewers.