Canopy Beds & Winter Solstice
A little girl climbs in a canopy bed,
tucked in by her Grandma.
A cross stitch needle point design is framed on the wall;
“Life is fragile, handle with prayer.” it says with a little bumblebee and flower on it.
Things changed or rearranged at grandma’s house
but she kept my mom’s canopy bed and the frame in the same spot.
A little girl on her day bed at night,
turns on the lamp light. She can’t sleep.
So she pulls out a book of poems her Grandma gave her;
Robert Louis Stevenson’s Leaves from a Child’s Garden of Verses
Poems illuminated and painted into idyllic scenes.
One of my favorite pages is of two little sisters sitting on their canopy bed reading.
The poem is called Bed in Summer.
Bed in Summer
In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer, quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.
I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.
And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?
Today, Tuesday afternoon, I arrive home from Oliver’s Pre-K Christmas party.
I tidy my room, light a candle in the kitchen, make the bed, turn on the Christmas tree lights, and now sit with my lap-top. Maggie rests at the edge of the bed.
It is overcast. A gray December day. So I also turn on the therapy light next to me. It is suppose to help with season affective disorder. It’s my first year to try one out and I am loving it so far.
This week, I think Thursday maybe, marks the winter solstice. The shortest day; the astronomical beginning of winter. Dec. 1st is the meteorological first day of winter.
Last week while reading the daily scripture passages listed in my Sacred Ordinary Days Journal I came across two passages about canopies that made me think of the childhood scenes above (Isaiah 4:2-6 and Acts 11:1-18) though the scriptures didn’t pertain to those moments at all the phrase canopy of glory, stuck with me; the idea of God's love and protection covering us.
Today the canopy sky looks heavy and low and dim. In many ways I love the cozy vibes it brings to cuddle up with soft warm things, to light a candle.
But it’s also the time of year I feel the need tangibly for the the sun, likewise the Son, the warmth and light it brings, and the dynamic strength it creates on it’s own, like Jesus too.
When we feel the shorts days, the long nights,
may we let Him be all that is calm, all that is bright for us.
We recieve His banner of love, like little girls sitting under canopy beds, reading poems, and saying night time prayers. We come to Him like children, needing protection, and comfort, and care. We too are fragile, like the cross-stitch emroidered art read hanging on my Grandma's wall, but we can pray that He will be strong for us.
A Summer Solstice Type of Prayer for Winter Solstice Type of Week
“The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.”’ numbers 6:24-26