An Ode to Boxing Day

Ode to Boxing Day

It’s a humble holiday, tucked in between
Christmas and New Year’s, but it’s really keen.
Things look a little bedraggled, it’s true
The tree’s a little droopy and no longer new

The movies and music of the Christmas season
Are getting on our nerves now, and we’re seeing no reason
To eat even one more sugary oversweet sweet
It’s time for broccoli and carrots (maybe hold on the beets)

The pressure for perfection comes off on this day,
the toys have been opened, and it’s come time to play.
And if before we were wearing faux holiday cheer
to blend in with the others and not Scroogey appear

It’s time now to be genuine, and honest and real.
The food banks are empty, people still need a warm meal.
The homeless and hungry and jobless and alone
still need love and care, still need a home.

So maybe we can celebrate the day after Christmas
by keeping the spirit of hope alive,
we might make that our business.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell, from *A Poem Lives on My Windowsill*

Unrepentant Joy

So I’ve been feeling kind of guilty because I’ve got this joy just bubbling up inside me right now – there’re big, fat snowflakes falling gently outside my window, and Christmas tree lights twinkling on the tree, and birds snacking at the birdfeeder, and a cat sitting in the window watching it all, and Burl Ives is singing “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas…” – and this moment is just so perfect and beautiful! But I know there are also a lot of really horrible things happening in the world right now – cruelty and murder and corruption and greed and pollution and starvation – and so I’ve been sitting here wondering if it’s right for me to feel happy.

And… so what I’m thinking is… how is being unhappy going to feed starving children or shelter the homeless? And how is surrendering my joy to bullies and bigots and busybodies going to help end bullying and bigotry and busybodying?

So. Yeah. I guess I’m going to let go of the guilt. I am going to be shameless about my joy. Incorrigible. Irrepressible. Unrepentant. And I ain’t apologizing.

“Be happy at all times and in all places; for remember it is right and a duty you owe to yourself and to your God to retain the right, no matter how loudly the senses scream.”
– Edward A. Kimball

“You are not alone.”

“Many people need desperately to receive this message: ‘I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them.  You are not alone.'”
– Kurt Vonnegut

Something very cool happened this year: People I never knew existed suddenly appeared in my life voicing the same concerns I’ve voiced, sharing the same values as me, befriending me, offering their support when I’ve felt discouraged or afraid, and letting me know I’m not alone.  It’s been amazing, really, how we’ve all managed to find each other in these unsettling, dark times. Just as the metaphorical batteries in my flashlight start to die, and the light starts to go out, suddenly someone will appear out of nowhere and shine his light out of the darkness and offer help, and tell me I’m not alone.

It has meant the world to me.

There have also been friends who have “defriended” me in the last year, too, of course – because I am so controversial and badass and stuff 🙂 – but I’m thinking for every friend who felt the need to defriend me, three more new friends have suddenly appeared to offer friendship.

I am rich with true friends – both old friends and new – I am wealthy beyond imagining.

My dear Humoristian hooligans –

May you bring your abundant kindness and wisdom into today. May you lighten the hearts of the scared and despairing with your courage and good will to all mankind, and may you bring healthy, healing laughter to the stodgy, stingy, and staid. May you find hope and beauty in the good continually unfolding around you. May you make a new friend, find a new song, and leave behind something beautiful. Amen.

Go out there and work your magic!

Love, 
Karen

Happy solstice, everyone! “Let there be light!”

let there be light

Waiting for the Christmas Spirit

The kitsch and spangles
and baubles and bangles,
And department store Santa,
just really can’ta
Seem to bring me
the spirit of Christmas.

And I’ve been waiting to feel it –
the real Christmas spirit
Hoping it’d come by now.
The stockings are stuffed,
the tree is all buffed,
The cookies are baked
and frosted and fluffed
But there’s still something missing –
a feeling, a tingling
that’s supposed to come every Christmas.

Except…
Maybe that Christmas feeling,
that energy and tingling
Is something I can have every day –
It doesn’t depend on spangles,
or jingly-bell jangles
Or jolly men dressed all in red.
It comes in the sharing
of laughter and caring
And the comfort in words with love said:
To all – Peace! Joy! Hope!
Every moment of every day.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell, from The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Christmas Book

Source: Waiting for the Christmas Spirit

Up

Up
by Xander Terrell

If only fear could fuel a rocket,
we could reach the moon in time
to escape these shadows.
We could bring the sun down to earth
to brighten our days in time
to watch them burn.
They would do anything to love themselves,
except love each other.
You would do anything to love them,
except love yourself.
If only hatred could melt metal,
no more bombs, knives, or bullets.
If only ignorance could feed the hungry,
what an abundant world we would live in.
If only greed could make life everlasting,
then there would be no need to be greedy.
Success for us is being better off
than the people who harvest your food,
produce your pleasures, and support the
successful on their broken backs.
What if success was measured only
on the happiness of all mankind,
and not each individual man?
What if people cared more
about making a beautiful world,
than making their little worlds beautiful?
– Xander Terrell, from Dream Voyage
available at Amazon.com

xanders-book-cover-dream-voyage

 

Christmas at the Post Office

Stopped at the local post office on the way home from work. There was a complicated transaction with the customer in front of me that took maybe 10 minutes. A couple of people came in and lined up behind me. We’re all standing there, quiet, behaving ourselves – like people do in elevators. Of course, seeing as how *I* was there – this couldn’t last long.

I turned around and said, “Merry Christmas!” and the two people standing behind me smiled and wished me a merry Christmas back. The woman behind me said, “They should be playing Christmas music.” I started singing, “We wish you a merry Christmas, we wish you a merry Christmas…” – grand finale – “we wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new (raised my voice an octave) year!” The people behind me laughed.

Pretty soon my old friend, Mr. Rousseau, came in and greeted me. I told him we were having a party in there. He suggested there should be caroling – my cue – I started singing “Jingle Bells” – everyone joined in. Just as we finished Jingle Bells the customer in front of me finished her transaction, and it was my turn. Perfect timing! I bought my stamps and picked up a package, and as I was leaving I said to my fellow customers, “And my next show will be at…” and they started laughing. 

And for your listening pleasure (or listening something) :), here’s another Christmas carol I recorded on singsnap a couple years ago: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.