Solstice Claus is Coming

Today is the day of the Winter Solstice, the moment in the calendar year when the northern hemisphere reaches its most light-starved point. For those who care about such things, the nadir happens at 10:49 pm local time, and then we begin the long slog back towards summer’s warmth.

Trail Baboon singsong poet laureate Tyler Schuyler Wyler has been shivering in his garret pondering the importance of this astronomical moment, and how it is so completely overshadowed by other things.

Some say that Santa can’t be real
in thought or deed or word.
Because no one can go everywhere
in one night. That’s absurd.

Even if he’s supersonic.
Even if he’s extra quick.
There’s no way that any human dude
could do the Santa trick.

And it’s more than just logistics
There’s another glaring flaw.
It’s that Santa, in one moment
can bring joy and warmth and awe

to each person that he meets
as he completes his yearly rounds.
At the risk of understatement
that is tougher than it sounds.

Is it possible, however?
I don’t see it being done,
unless somehow we’ve conflated
Jolly Santa and the Sun.

As if two old songs collided
in their wholly separate lives
and then merged into a hybrid
by the Beatles and Burl Ives.

For he sees you when you’re sleeping
Little Darlin’, stay awake.
Been a long cold lonely winter.
Here he comes, make no mistake.

All the kids in girl and boyland
will be hoping they can spy
something red and round and plump
that’s arcing low across the sky.

You’re already on his list
to get a gift of cheer and light.
If you’re nice or if you’re naughty,
doesn’t matter, it’s all right.

Who is coming to visit you this Christmas?

26 thoughts on “Solstice Claus is Coming”

  1. A friend is coming in from out of town next week, but Christmas is mostly family. Ours is not large, but we genuinely enjoy each other and that makes gathering for things like Christmas delightful. A long time friend will join us for Christmas Eve (torsk, julekage, krumkake – if I can get it made – maybe some lingonberries…), Christmas Day is at my mom’s with my brother and his family (I imagine we may lose Daughter and Youngest Niece to the spot under the piano that seems just right for hiding and playing Minecraft – which frees sister-in-law and I up to do things like laugh over a glass of wine or two).

    And thank you TSW for the fine verse. Now I have a fine Beatles tune rolling through my head. And that’s a good thing on this, our shortest day.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. All of the elders in our family are gone so now it is just us, our children and our Grandchildren who gather together on Christmas day. In the past our parents and one of my Uncles came. We have always had the gathering at our house. Sometimes one of our daughters and their family was not there because they had been invited to the home of one of my son-in-law’s parents.

    Both daughters and their families are with us this year and a recently arrived Grandson will be celebrating his first Christmas with us. We have had a lot of experience holding these family gatherings and it still is a big challenge to feed this big group taking into account the dietary needs and food preference of everyone. I am sure it will be wonderful and I am also sure we will be relieved when it comes to an end.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Daughter arrives today, and son and DIL arrive tomorrow. We are cooking now (Daughter’s favorite soup). Husband made Knoephla, a German-Russian chicken and dumpling soup last night, and sometime this week we will make Lobster chipotle chowder. We are having beef tenderloin for Christmas dinner. Son wants some German Christmas cookies, and he can make them on Wednesday. Tonight I will make Chicken Curry for us to lunch on all week, and I have to make French Bread. I believe we will have enough food. 😉

    Daughter and her best friened intend to have a Hobbit/Lord of the Rings fest as soon as daughter arrives, and want to watch all six films back to back. Son and DIL usually just crash and veg out. We will play board games and cook and eat.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. We have Nephew’s family of 5 coming after Christmas for a week – we’ll have them here for most of those nights. Will let them have the upstairs, and since the screen porch is unavailable, I’ve “reserved” the apartment of a friend of mine who will be away, where Husband and I can go for overnights if we want, and thus have a few quiet moments. 🙂

    OT: We’re headed out to Winona now for a couple of days – see you all Wednesday.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You might need to see us to believe it, Renee. We get along remarkably well. I used to say we didn’t fight when we were married, so it would be queer to start fighting after the split. Of course, there are differences and some old hurts. It is easy enough to keep them in the background and just deal with each other as dear old friends who like and respect each other. We always enjoyed each other, but we weren’t meant to be married.

        That reminds me of the weirdest date of my life. A woman I was dating was skittish about my continuing friendship with my former wife. (She was skittish about many things.) So I had a dinner party and invited two guests: my ex (who happened to be in town) and my new girlfriend. I wanted the girlfriend to see for herself how things were. She was amazed. The two ladies enjoyed each other.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. I will be the guest. The Minnesota contingent is traveling to Missouri (Kansas City area) to join my oldest daughter and her family. Should be fun traveling with two 2-year olds for 8 hours in the car….

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I also will be a guest…friends who adopt me for the holidays, an extended family party at one house for Christmas Eve, then small gathering for dinner at another on Christmas Day. My sister won’t travel north from Mankato because of the Cities, I prefer not to travel anywhere far over the holidays, so we talk on the phone.

    Recently found this little piece of history on the web…in honor of Solstice Claus (thank you, TSW and Dale):

    On the night of December 20, the Norse god Ingvi Freyr rode over the earth on the back of his golden shining boar, Gullin-börsti, bringing Light and Love back into the World. The god Odin (Wotan) led this Wild Ride; charging across the sky on his eight-legged horse, Sleipnir. In ancient times, Germanic and Norse children would leave their boots filled with hay and sugar out by the hearth on Solstice Eve for Sleipnir’s journey. In return, Odin would leave them a gift for their kindness.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi–

    We had a Christmas yesterday. Traveled the 12 miles from our house NE to my brothers house SW. A good time was had by all.

    Our son and his wife made the trip from Burnsville to SW Rochester. And then NE to our house. And then they went home again.
    So that’s all over.
    One more day of school for daughter and then we both get a vacation. College classes are over for the time being and I’m enjoying the quiet.

    Not expecting any visitors beyond that. At least until mid January…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Are any of you interested in celebrating the winter solstice outside tonight? I’m not. If you are interested in an out door solstice celebration, there will be one at Goldwater Spring park located between Minnehaha Park and Fort Snelling. Friends of Coldwater Spring are holding this celebration starting at 7 tonight. I think they might include howling at the moon as part of their activities.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll howl at the moon while collecting eggs in a bit here.

      And if the coyotes start howling the dogs will be howling too.

      Our son works security night shift at Mystic Lake Casino. He said ‘Oh Great; full moon and Christmas. It will be crazy.’

      Liked by 2 people

  9. My schedule today is replete with no-shows. I think they are all out howling at the moon. I plan to dust, put the lights on the tree, and make chicken curry.


  10. I returned Saturday from 4 days at my sister’s with son#2 for early celebration, avoiding the travel crush. We had a low key “Christmas day” – my first without a tree in the house. We only did stockings and a couple of presents for son#2.
    Son#2 and I will spend actual Christmas day together; i’m not sure what’s on the docket. Probably eating and some binge watching of something or other.
    Since my Christmas is past, it feels weird to have stories about the Christmas tree industry and last minute sales ads. I have to catch myself and remember where we are on the calendar.

    Liked by 3 people

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