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Topic: Trying (Futilely) To Keep Up
Posted by Everyman - 09:13:13 EST

From a year ago this day.

No . . .


Missed it, lying senseless in bed this morning.

Winter Solstice: 6:17 EST, December 21, 2012


On a good day, such as yesterday, the Gods and the ancients smiled. With them, about one hundred present-day mortals were also smiling as the famous honeyed rosy golden beam cast forth by a determined sun made its way towards the monument. God, art and precision engineering all have a part in creating what is the marvel of Newgrange. Hopes of experiencing the ingenious role of the roof box in the drama, from inside the chamber or from outside the monument facing a high ridge flaking the south bank of the river, draws pilgrims and devotees from all over the world, as well as Ireland.

A trio of Kerry men had travelled through the night intent on being part of the celebrations. It was close, but they made it, as had a solemn older man wearing a troll-like headdress cum woollen hat complete with two thick white woollen plaits.

Part of the magic is to arrive in the darkness; this is the morning following the longest night of the year. To be at Newgrange at the solstice is to welcome the beginning of the gradual return of the daylight. More importantly, it marks the first stages of the slow death of winter.

And I hear, once more, the voice of my father, dead now for almost 40 years, observing (it was an annual ritual, fittingly enough):

"The days are getting longer. Winter's back is broken."

It brings a smile to my face . . .

Even now, even still.

One day each year.


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