Hemning Sternberg (moonshadow) wrote,
Hemning Sternberg
moonshadow

the Solstice, the Solstice

For a number of years my beloved mrpet and I have hosted longest-night vigils at our home. This year, though, I wanted to take a break. Keeping five to twelve people awake and entertained for up to twelve hours is a job of work and no mistake.

This year, as suggested by the fabulous trouble4hire, we went to a special Solstice reading of the play A Midsummer Night's Dream, as performed by the Actor's Shakespeare Project in downtown Boston. They had free champagne and tiny oranges and they were so happy that people were there. The show looks like it's going to be really interesting and the actors seem awesome - I recommend it for any who are interested.

In addition to the open rehearsal (which was really neat and brought back a lot of memories of my time on the stage) we also sang together a pagan version of the Holly and the Ivy. They had friends of theirs from the Boston Revels come and do a song and a beautiful Yule toast by Susan Cooper, which I give you here.

And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing, To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us—listen!
All the long echoes sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.

Welcome Yule!

Whatever your holidays be, whatever you do to honor the light and the love in your life, I wish for you that it is full of joy and peace and the certain knowledge that the light always comes back. Sending you love.
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