Perhaps, that seems like a strange title for tonight's blog but I was beginning to think I had. I hadn't written a new poem since I finished my book and I had many attempts. It could have been that I hadn't had anything peak my interest, or no poetic phrase came to mind that I could go with or, behind door number three...I had lost my touch. As you age things go like that. They don't just sneak up on you either. One day you have 'em and the next you don't.
But all that aside, something did strike me as poem worthy, namely the commercial readying for the holidays. When it's barely October and they've got lit Christmas trees laden with ornaments sitting next to the Halloween and Thanksgiving decorations, you've got to say, "Are you kidding me?" I love the holidays, don't get me wrong, but every year it seems like the retail prep starts earlier and earlier and I'm, frankly, sick of it.
There's too much concentration on the buying of gifts anyway, in my opinion, but starting so early it feels like the wishing and the having of something is being stuffed down our throats. And the constant timetable, "Only 7 weeks until Christmas, last sale before Christmas, Better get a move on, Time is a-wastin'!" Nothing leisurely about it, no time to ponder the meaning, just get going.
And so much is geared to the kids. Of course, that's just what the manufacturers have in mind, what I call "The More, More, More Syndrome." What's happened to the giving of a present, not two or three? Is it any wonder that children feel entitled and are looking for the next gift before they've even finished opening the one in their lap? We've created self-centered children who expect there will be MORE. And we can't understand why they're ungrateful brats. We've played into it all and have created these little monsters. Shame on us! (Sorry about the soap box tirade. That wasn't my intent. Read on. What follows is a much softer perspective.)
WHAT'S THE HURRY?
by Patty Lynn
Say, what's the hurry, it's too soon
It's barely Halloween.
The stores decked out with Christmas fare
With trees and grass still green?
So, c'mon can't we take our time,
Enjoy these days of Fall,
Watch Winter slowly usher in
Our senses to enthrall...
Anticipate the time when we
As family come together,
To take the opportunity
To snuggle in cold weather...
To bundle up in comfy clothes,
All cozy by the fire,
The sipping of hot chocolate is
What freezing hands desire.
Then as the day comes closer still
For thankfulness and praise,
Share blessings, often undeserved,
Not just one, but for days,
To contemplate Thanksgiving Day
And what it really means,
It's much more than too much to eat
And tighter fitting jeans.
But rather taking stock of all
The Good Lord gives each day.
For whether much or just enough
A thankful heart repays...
By giving back, by sharing too,
And in so doing, lives...
A life that's full of untold wealth
That freely loves, forgives.
And from this holiday begins
Our memories of Christ's birth,
A birth much more significant
Than any here on earth.
So often Christmas time is marred
By selfishness and having,
When value's measured by the price,
And bargains by the grabbing?
Why can't our Christmas truly be
A birthday for our Savior,
Who came to give eternity
From heaven to a manger.
Don't you get gifts on your birthday?
Why can't we do the same
By giving presents to the poor,
Ones given in His name?
It seems to me the holidays
The sped up celebrating,
Lack time to ponder everything.
To me it's devastating.
And if the holidays become
Meshed into one another,
We'll lose the meaning, lose the joy.
Can't we go back, uncover...
The hidden jewel of family
Who love to be together,
Who come as one, who come in love,
No matter Winter weather,
Who worship Christ then pause to say
God Bless you on this Christmas day.
We wouldn't rush to buy, to wrap
And not fall prey to retail's trap.
This year I pledge to slow things down,
And savor every minute,
From Halloween to Christmas time,
Find joy and love within it.