New Year Resolve by Mary Sarton

May Sarton (1912-1995)
At her death, May Sarton had written 53 books: 19 novels, 17 books of poetry, 15 nonfiction works including her acclaimed journals, 2 children’s books, a play, and some screenplays. I’ve tried to list first editions here, whenever possible, or at least to give the copyright date if I couldn’t find a complete reference to the first edition. Many newer editions of her works are also in print. I have sometimes listed multiple editions if the illustrations or supporting materials are different. For a comprehensive bibliography describing works by and about Sarton, see May Sarton: A Bibliography. (Annotated) by Lenora P. Blouin. Metuchen, New Jersey: The Scarecrow Press, Inc., 1978.

May Sarton wished that upon her death a fund would be established from the residue of her estate to provide scholarships for poets and historians of science. (Her father was a historian of science at Harvard.) The Sarton Fund has been established and is held under the auspices of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, of which May Sarton was a member. The Sarton Estate recorded May Sarton’s memorial service, which may be ordered for a small sum that includes a donation to the fund.

To contact the Sarton Fund, write to:
Sarton Fund, c/o The American Academy of Arts & Sciences, Norton’s Woods, 136 Irving St., Cambridge, MA 02138.

Source

May-Sarton-Quotes-1

New Year Resolve by May Saron

The time has come
To stop allowing the clutter
To clutter my mind
Like dirty snow,
Shove it off and find
Clear time, clear water.
Time for a change,
Let silence in like a cat
Who has sat at my door
Neither wild nor strange
Hoping for food from my store
And shivering on the mat.
Let silence in.
She will rarely mew,
She will sleep on my bed
And all I have ever been
Either false or true
Will live again in my head.
For it is now or not
As old age silts the stream,
To shove away the clutter,
To untie every knot,
To take the time to dream,
To come back to still water.

from The Silence Now – New and Uncollected Earlier Poems

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Complete Contentment

The morning ritual, with the first coffee sitting on the desk, is to read a few blogs, the news on line…check the e mail and then set out to create a day.  Tom Phillips is playing down at the Ironwood tonight, but I didn’t think to reserve a spot until last Friday…so, I’m on a waiting list. My dancing partner, Bee, says he can get me in…but New Year’s Eve is not the night to drive down to a place and then find out that they can’t sandwich you in to an event.

Being single is weird on New Year’s Eve.  Regardless, there are ways around that and things that you can do to cause you to feel those anticipatory jitters about how wonderful life is without a partner.  Like I say…going to one of those spots where people LOVE music is one of those welcoming ideas for singles.  I have many single friends who just love music so much that it’s great to be with them and their passion for all things beautiful as you ring in the New Year.  I’m pretty sure that the Gorilla House is open tonight…now, there, I could mingle with like-minded artists…maybe paint…have a drink…and one thing is for sure, have a barrell of laughs!

Being peaceful…now, that’s always a great way to bring in the New Year.  Slicing yourself up a bit of good sausage (will have to talk to the daughter about where she picked up the Christmas sausage…it was amazing!)  OH!  Here’s the information on the packaging for the strawberry/rubarb pie purchased at the same location…The Log Barn 1912!  Amazing food!

So…yeah…put on some music…slice up some good sausage…put out the gherkin pickles, cheese and crackers…for the brave, a tin of oysters!  Open a glass of wine and light up the candles.  Play some music. MAGIC!

I think one of the most memorable ‘quiet’ New Year’s Eve events I enjoyed was one shared with my son.  We went over to the movie theater and watched the Last Samurai.  We stepped into the cold winter night at around 1:15 a.m. that year.  The movie had been such a beautiful metaphor somehow.  We talked quietly about the whole experience as we drove home.

So, yeah…the point is.  Bless your own life with divine light for the new year.  Give yourself everything you need to be a healthy, positive and affirming force for others.  Be generous of heart and go easy on the pity parties.  Create!  Challenge!  Question!  Love! And…delight in the small things.

My small thing this morning… the light…a small shape of light, perhaps reflected off of a Christmas ornament on the tree on to my bookshelf.  It was beautiful and I may be reading too much into this (readers laugh here) but, I consider it to be a sign…an offering…an offering of light for this day and the year to come.  I’m taking it that way.

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A friend of mine posted the lyrics to this tune and I’m going to post the music here.  One of the deeply inspiring experiences of 2012 for me was to sit and listen to Leonard Cohen.  Sit back…enjoy…and remember to be kind to yourselves.  Happy New Year!

Driving North to Airdrie

The sky was blue and the roads, clear.

I have taken a lovely and reflective time away from blogging…enjoying the warmth of the indoors contrasted with the bitter chill of winter outdoors.  I’ve eaten a lot of really good food, as you all have (I pray you all have) and shared some drinks with friends and family.  Nothing could be better than Christmas afternoon and evening with all three of my children and their partners. LOVE!

I’ve plugged in the outdoor lights and nativity each evening around four and unplugged them around eleven, before I have gone to my room to read.  I finished up Guy Vanderhaeghe’s short story collection, Man Descending and have been pouring through Wally Lamb’s The Hour I First Believed.  It’s been a long time since I’ve read Wally Lamb and am connected again with his awesome syntax.  He is a fine writer.  As far as the content, of course the topic resonates with me after all of the recent news of Newtown.

Sooo…good food, good music, good drink and good reads.

One of my really beautiful times came on Boxing Day, with my almost-traditional drive north for clam chowder at Glo’s.  Being in her home is like being in a fantasy world…everything is ordered and remarkably beautiful.  She has such an aesthetic, it makes a person feel peaceful, just stepping into her home.  Sipping on cranberry and orange on ice and sharing in finger foods, I like catching up about our children…sharing in our year’s experiences and reforging our long-time friendship.  Thank you, Glo!

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Christmas Magic

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The Magi by William Butler Yeats 1916

Now as at all times I can see in the mind’s eye,
In their stiff, painted clothes, the pale unsatisfied ones
Appear and disappear in the blue depth of the sky
With all their ancient faces like rain-beaten stones,
And all their helms of silver hovering side by side,
And all their eyes still fixed, hoping to find once more,
Being by Calvary’s turbulence unsatisfied,
The uncontrollable mystery on the bestial floor.

Winter Solstice

We move from the longest night…into the light.  You can only imagine what these days and nights must have felt like for people without power…generators.  You can imagine their singing of songs to comfort one another…the lighting of fire…a candle.  What light must have represented at the time and still does!

What does the ribbon bind? Hope, Faith, Joy, Love

What does the ribbon bind? Hope, Faith, Joy, Love

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The Green Man

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Visiting Al Gerritsen

This afternoon, I had the pleasure of visiting Al Gerritsen’s woodwork shop.  I commissioned him to carve me a magpie, to add to my collection.  It was such an enjoyable visit and I felt in awe of his humility and his great talent, both.  The smell of his shop brought me very close to the young child, Jesus…and what it must have been like growing up with a father who was a carpenter.  It was fun to see Al’s nativity under his front yard tree.  I am blessed that Fred and Catherine shared theirs with me.

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Today I learned that Al was a Franciscan during the 1950s and 1960s.  I also learned that he apprenticed with John Nugent in Lumsden, Saskatchewan.  After Vatican II, Al was one of the artists who helped develop the liturgical spaces within churches, turning those altars around to face the people and creating visual art works that spoke of the connection between the Creator and his people.

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John Nugent, Lumsden, making final inspection of a chalice, 1959. On the bench is one of his wood carvings, entitled “Mother and Child.”
Saskatchewan Archives Board

Here, find a slide show of some of what I noticed and heard stories about in the studio.  Magic!

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Glory to God in Highest Heaven

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The Shepherds and Angels

8That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. 9Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, 10but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 11The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! 12And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”

13Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,

14“Glory to God in highest heaven,

and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”

15When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. 17After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. 18All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, 19but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. 20The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.

The Wise Men Followed a Star

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Matthew 2:1-12

The Magi Visit the Messiah

2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi[a] from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”

When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:

“‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’[b]

Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”

After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

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The Escape to Egypt

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The Escape to Egypt

13After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.”

14That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother, 15and they stayed there until Herod’s death. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: “I called my Son out of Egypt.”e

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An Angel of the Lord Appeared to Them

Luke 2:8-20

[8] And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. [9] An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. [10] But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. [11] Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. [12] This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

[13] Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

[14] “Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

[15] When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

P1080958 P1080963 P1080968Art by Grade Two students.  You’ve got to love that black sheep!