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?