Martin Robertson

Now and Then

Winter Solstice

The tilted earth pauses, prepares to lean

the other way.  Our year begins again

—or does another year begin?

Nothing can come of nothing, nothing goes

to nothing, but we cannot see the cause

which moves the tides of gain and loss.

This year we saw a shining being enter,

like any other year, the darkening winter;

but unlike any other year,

at the dead season, at the silent hour,

at the still moment of the absent sun

cease, be gone.

And saw begin

out of the same darkness strangely growing

with warmth and light and the returning sun

another being.

And love in loss, not understanding,

wept—and love blessed sang—and both were love.

Was there an end?

Or a beginning?  Can you cut flowing

water, or mark the moments of the wind?

Is it the wind, is it love, saying

“The year’s end is the year’s beginning,

one in time—pain and joy are one in love”?