Thursday, January 1, 2015

A New Year's Wish

By Susan
The quietest New Year's Eve I've ever had
As I write this, I'm in my parent's Kentucky home, sitting by a warm fireplace on a cold night. It's New Year's Eve, and I fly home tomorrow. I've been on the road for thirteen days. My heart is full.

Writing a post for the new year has had me stumped this time around. I'm not going to lie: 2014 has been one of the hardest years of my life. It's also been filled with wonder and joy and love. Tonight, I've wrestled to find the right words for this blog: do I write a happy post designed for the new year-- the most celebratory of all holidays-- despite the disappointments and heartbreak of this year's journey? Or do I deal honestly with the pain? What do we do, as writers, when we can't find the words?

Car window ice magic, Kentucky sunrise
And so I decided to share a beautiful piece written by Mikhail Iossel, professor of English at Concordia University, the University of Tampa's MFA Program, and founder of the Summer Literary Seminars. I read this early this morning and have re-read it throughout the day. It's exactly what I needed to hear when I couldn't write the words myself. 

From Mikhail Iossel:
2014 was a difficult year, on many counts. But now it's all but over, and life goes on, as it always does, with or without us. Time, unaware of its own existence, robs us of itself ceaselessly, with an ever-greater determination -- and what can we do but keep trying to make the most of it, continually hoping against hope and smiling, no matter what? "The robbed that smiles, steals something from the thief," says Duke of Venice in Othello -- and he sure has the point.

... "We must love one another or die," wrote Auden at the outset of the most ruinous of wars the world has known thus far. The world, though certainly a dangerously tense and turbulent place right now, too, is not quite in the same dire straits as it was back then -- not yet, at any rate; and hopefully, it never will come to be -- so if love may feel at times as too intense and invasive an emotion perhaps with which to encumber one another's quiet, peaceful presence in the world, then -- how about simply liking each other? "We must like one another or... what?"

No, it doesn't have the same ring. Let's just settle for love, the consequences be damned.
 I wish you all health and peace as we enter 2015... and I wish you love, big love. Happy New Year!

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