Monday, January 05, 2015

What January means to me.

Everyone--the children, the grandchildren--has gone home. The house is unbelievably quiet. Even though sports have been going continuously throughout the holidays, our teams seem to have re-emerged. It's still, pretty much, always dark. I wear coats and giant cardigans. Sometimes many cardigans. Even though the Christmas tree is so, so dead, I hate to take it down. Always, I hate to take it down. I kind of need the light.

It's time to wash all the holiday tablecloths and placemats, but I haven't, not yet. There are things like pomegranate seeds and leftover Josefinas spread in the refrigerator, but there's also a loaf of entirely dried out baguette, just daring me to actually make good on my promise to turn it into bread crumbs.

via Things Organized Neatly

My to-do list is daunting. It is paralysis in the form of a list. My intentions are enormous and outsize.

The patio lights rhyme with the Christmas lights, so we turn them on every night, even with icicles hanging from the wires.

I have acquired a tiny Virgin of Guadalupe, actually a Christmas ornament that I found at Target. I bought a sacred heart carved out of wood and painted a bold red and gold at the French Market. I think longingly of beignets.

The machinery of the new year is still warming up. I can hear its engine.

I am still listening to Lazaretto which is one of my favorite 2014 albums. But only sporadically, on my Shuffle, at the gym. It is so good that it survives this mode of listening.

I can read three whole chapters at a time in my book before I fall into slumber. At this pace, I should have the review I'm supposed to write of it finished in early March, although technically it is due in a few days.

Tomorrow, tomorrow and tomorrow I will make hay out of my list. Tomorrow, I will decide the criteria by which I will know whether to keep something or give it away. I could start on for instances, but we'd be at that all night, and I might need to fall into slumber.

It's cold. It's dark. But it is, it is getting lighter, minutes more light every day. That is the true meaning of January, in my pocket like hidden prayer beads, while we ride the slow, cold, dark half of the earth as it comes back around.


  1. I love this version of January. Thank you.

  2. Ach. You take the darkness and spin it into gold.

  3. Did you read that essay in Slate about moving Christmas to February 7th. I think you might like that--give Thanksgiving and New Year's time to be themselves and us 6 more weeks to prepare and wait for Christmas. And then, the letdown after Christmas isn't 3 more months of winter--it would be instead almost spring. I'm hoping for a wild Chinese New Year, personally!

  4. My tree is still up too. I had a two hour nap today... I'm taking my time in January too.

  5. Isn't taking your time always an option? Yes. Yes it is.

  6. Keep feeding me these words of light -- I may make it through until the spring after all.



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