Daily Archives: December 21, 2018

The Winter Solstice

Darkness fights, willing the days grow slender
as winter’s chill grasps the land.
Wings have long-since whisked birds away.
The Cardinal, the Mallard, the mourning dove —
Some brave the long winter to come.

Far in the southern sky the sun ponders,
awaiting its inexorable march to promontory.
Darkness wins the day, blanketing the hours and
badgering child and woman and man
to withdraw into homes lamped by fire and filament.

Darkness fights and wins, until this long night
when the hills are still and the hope of new,
of gladdened dreams, of the orb come again
burns without ceasing in heart and hearth.

The creatures of the sky know. Sparrows rest
their song, but espy the eastern glow and
train practiced eyes on the purple horizon.

So too the soul. Darkness fights, but shall not win.
Solstice, annual friend, welcome, and bring promise
yet again.

Jeffrey Richard Carter
Saint Louis
December 2018


I thought I might try my hand at a bit of poetry for the winter solstice. And I’m not displeased with the outcome.

This was written on Monday evening this (17 December 2018) after I returned from Chicago and saw some ducks and some cardinals along the way home. I found myself thinking about how these birds stay. And then my niece Anna mentioned the solstice at supper. And I’d been thinking about writing about the solstice anyhow!

My 2019 is going to include a more purposeful decision to write with practice and thought. Starting with a bit of poetry as the new year begins . . . well, it kicks the practice into reality.