Jack Frost – The Phoenix of Ice

It was mid-December when the snow began
To the beat of Jack Frost’s clapping hands
Making all that saw it dance like his puppets
For he is the master of the winter white ball
Manically he laughed creating many shivers
The annual uninvited guest had returned

That malevolent jester that is seldom seen
Same bad old jokes but new tunes to learn
So again he clapped his hands again to snow
Changing the tempo from waltz to foxtrot
Filling his cold and empty heart with delight
Not even the sunshine could melt this one

Stomping his feet that made rippling cracks
As all slipped and slid trying not to fall down
Leaving a strange sweet taste sweet in the air
Hypnotising some to actually enjoy his games
Where is freedom from his prison with no key
Even the trees had turned into his white guards

The answer lay in shaking salt on the streets
Burning his dancing feet and made him scream
The tremors could be felt throughout the world
All he tried transformed into puddles of water
He had lost but vowed to return stronger and wiser
And like a phoenix of ice he shattered into pieces

© Fi S. J. Brown

Christmas 2018

As angel halos are polished brighter than Rudloph’s red nose
And Santa samples every sweet his elves have made this year
It is almost here that frantic rush to buy gifts we think others want
Hoping that in return we get more than some perfume or slippers

But for the supermarkets it started back in the heat of August’s sun
We popped in for the creams of sun and ice only to find crackers
In September out came that seasonal swear box if say its name
Surely only a fool would begin their annual celebrations so soon

By October the air begins to turn that distinctive autumnal smell
Advertisers scream through the leaves Christmas is coming soon
‘Buy this now to ensure it is the best you’ve ever had’ they lie to us
Every time we fall for them anew despite promises we made before

November is when any children make their annual written pilgrimage
Making lists of things that they’ll hate by that day in late December
Thinking of nothing else as they try to behave as know he is watching
With the wanting ever growing from iPads to ponies or weight in sweets

December dawns with a black thump as the credit card receipts mount
With the trimmings on the tree many colours and sprouts that nobody eats
Quickly we must write those cards we bought for charity but not be the first
Must change with the times too sending Instagrams, Tweets or Snapchats!

Christmas Eve is the calm before the storm with little time to relax or unwind
The shopping maybe over but there is always lots of wrapping left to do
Hanging up stockings to signal to Santa Claus we are ready for your visit
And a glass of mulled wine soon turns into just the one bottle for tonight

Next morning it begins early with the excitement of kids young and old
Long lies are not meant for this day so no point even beginning to try
Presents carefully wrapped but in seconds in a hundred pieces on the floor
With forced thank you’s exchanged matched only with the fake smiles

As the knife hits the turkey’s breast all eyes stop their games and stare
Even the sugar high children’s screaming and fighting stops for a second
The crackers go bang and paper crowns worn to a chorus of bad jokes
Time to overeat with no regret – well until the wake of Boxing Day morn

Watching the festive specials on the black box that never seem as good
Was it nostalgia or even the drink that says it was better in the old days
As the calm settles a collective world taking deep breaths that it is over
At least that is for another year when we will do it all over again!

© Fi S. J. Brown

Santa’s Blues

‘Tis almost that time of year,
That I fly through the air.
Avoiding speeding tickets,
And those low flying UFOs

Last year Donner had the trots,
Blixen got herself pregnant,
Prancer and Dancer retired,
And Rudolph won Strictly.

Kids today want too much,
Who do they think Santa is?
Do I look like Amazon.com?
What happen to wooden toys?

The elves all want to quit,
Some have repetitive strain,
Others demand flexitime,
And not one works overtime.

All Mrs Claus does is moan,
Once I tried the Atkins diet,
But nobody told me no beans,
Oh that poor old Ozone Layer.

So I have decided to quit,
Moving somewhere hotter,
With the blonde from Tinder,
Merry Christmas Everyone.

© Fi S. J. Brown

The Magic of Christmas

It is that time of year again when it’s not only bells that are ringing but tills with money spent on gifts that we hope will not be returned on Boxing Day to our ears from hearing that song by Slade or The Pogues again and again. The days have become shorter and shorter as ‘to do’ lists get longer and longer only matched by the queues everywhere we turn. The excitement reaches near hysteria as we count down to that man’s arrival with his herd of reindeer to deliver gifts on the 25th, but only if we have been good of course! For some it is extra special for marks the birth of the son of their god in a stable in area of the world that today tears of joy have been replaced by grief and blood.

Those that find themselves more ‘bah humbug‘ than ‘ho ho ho‘ are seen as the party poopers but we have to remember some of us may find it hard to find “that perfect gift” for family and loved ones, whereas others do not know if they can afford the cranberry sauce let alone the turkey or where they will be living tomorrow as the street may become home. There are of us those that live with hidden illness, from mental health to chronic pain, which want the feelings of sadness, darkness and/or pain to go away once and for all, not what Snapchat filter shall I use on my selfie today or which programs do I watch on my new giant TV first. There are also some of us that have nobody to celebrate with, as feel suffocated by the so called ‘magic’ not hypnotised.

When the clock strikes midnight on the 25th of December just remember it is but one day; it does not matter if we mark it or not for there is nothing to say we must celebrate, no matter what anyone may try to tell us otherwise. Do not feel guilty for not giving a physical gift because every day we give a bit of ourselves to those we love and those that appreciate, accept, and respect us for who we are, making an effort to be in our lives, remember this and know it can never be bought or sold. Finally, accepting who we are and what we have now not what we’d like to be/have or were/had, as well as accepting and respecting others irrespective of differences is the magic of Planet Earth not just on this one day or time of year, and spreading peace, light and love everywhere.

© Fi S. J. Brown

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,
I know I have not written to you in around thirty years but felt it was about time I did again. I know you judge children if they have been ‘naughty or nice’, but what about grown ups? The world is full of people that judge us from our hair style to skin colour, mock our belief in the Flying Spaghetti Monster to our chosen special loved one’s gender, and dismiss us due to disabilities but never find the abilities. They paint all in 50 shades of green, which is tainted with hate, greed and envy as they perceive or assume us to be a certain way, yet we are all one shade of red when we bleed when hurt by their ways. We also have voices are multicoloured, but others try mute or copy but never get the right shade despite the auto tune.

This year has been hard one for many, we are emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted by it all and looking forward to a break from it raining all the time. There are things that your elves just cannot make and be delivered by you, such as loved ones we would give anything to spend the day with but cannot due to health, distance, estrangement, and death. New jobs that would bring us changes that may improve circumstances, not meaning financial, to us and those we love. Improved health, physical and mental, so we can live life to the full The wisdom to accept today and make the most of it without longing for the past or wishing for the future.

This Christmas forget the iPhones and funny socks but instead bring people together with smiles and laughter. May glasses overfill with love and light not just wine or gin. Create memories to cherish over dinner not recipes that will mean disaster in years to come. To those with nobody to celebrate let someone open their door and hearts not just presents from under the tree. For some they have no home, so may they find shelter as Mary and Joseph did in the story many base this celebration on and give birth to a hope filled with love and light that lasts a lifetime.

Thank you Santa for reading my letter so far; I have now stopped with the wants to consider nobody ever asks what you or your elves want. So what do you want? Some may leave you a drink and mince pie in thanks without considering the bigger picture. Just as the elves help you, some may help us to make that dream a reality or ensure the big night goes to plan but we not always see or appreciate quite all they do. Equally, we do not always thank those that give themselves to us as we take their presence for granted, assuming they will be unchanging and there for us much like you dear Santa.

So thank you once again dear Santa and to all the elves, know even as a grown up we may make wishes for presents that you cannot wrap and put in a stocking, just like my niece asking for a pony. The Christmas magic cannot buy or bring what truly matters, the human spirit filled with love, empathy, peace, light and happiness to others, and that is my gift to you and those that read this letter. This may not sound much but it is all we need, and can be shared globally irrespective of difference, location and.address.

Love,
Fi x

© Fi S. J. Brown

Festive Ponders 2015

It is almost the shortest day of the year, which means the final countdown of the festive season will truly begin. A time for excess, but let’s make it of love, compassion and empathy, not envy, jealousy, or the largest turkey to diamond ring we can afford. Remember, it is not the size of the gift or price tag, but the thought another human being thinking of us that does. They took time out of their day to do so, even if we don’t like it.
 
It is also the time when we reflect on the year now almost over, resolving to make the next better than this. Instead of resolving to change habits that we will break as soon as the 1am bells ring, why do we not consider being ourselves 24/7. Be true to who we are and what matters to us, nobody has the right to tell us it is not normal or wrong as it is what is what and how life’s colours paint our story and no two are ever truly a like.
 
Also, be gentle with ourselves when things don’t go as planned, that way when success comes it can be like enjoying the view from a mountain seeing all we overcame to get there. Do not feel guilty at that piece of chocolate or extra mince pie, as we all deserve a treat for surviving those dark and hard times. However, using alcohol to drunks to cover those times do not work, like a band aid on a gaping, the pain will always seep through.
 
Nobody is truly ever alone, we all have someone somewhere that we matter to even in thought and spirit. It may not be a happy season for all but send hope. To those we call family or close friend, keep them close in heart not just at Christmas but every day by letting our thoughts and actions show how much they mean to us. To those we may only speak to via Facebook or Christmas card, are symbols of our life’s journey from past to present, giving it shape.
 
To those that follow my blog I appreciate you doing so as you follow my journey and do not judge it, accepting my quirks and idiosyncratic ponders, as paint the world as it is through my experiences and points of view. To those these are the first words of mine you have read, thank you for taking time to read. Now take all these words as my gift to you all, wishing good health (mental and physical), love, light and peace today and everyday.
 
© Fi S. J. Brown

Santaphobos

We have now entered the time of year that a dangerous and highly contagious disease is at its peak for symptoms. The disease is called “Santaphobos“, although not fatal in itself, the disease does get progressively worse every December.

The origins of Santaphobos are uncertain, however recent research has shown overexposure to children to under the age of ten to an older obese gentleman with a white beard, dressing in red and white, chanting “ho, ho, ho” and goes by the name of Santa Claus as a key factor.

Those that sat on the knee of someone matching the above description often cried at the time but their tears were ignored as he is meant to be a sign on good. Also this gentleman would ask them questions such as what they wanted for Christmas that they did not want to answer as for the rest of the year their parents told them never to talk to strangers!

To ensure the children behaved they are also told this person will come down their chimney if they are good and deliver them gifts with his reindeer friends on December the 25th. Unfortunately, it is the lies the parents tell repeatedly at this time in his name that may result later in “Grumpy Teenager Syndrome” as the child no longer believe what they’re told by the parents.

Symptoms vary with every individual as each case is unique. However, tell tale signs may include:

  • Mentioning the word “Christmas” results in the response “bah humbug”;
  • The sound of crackers and/or party poppers makes them pop a blood vessel;
  • The idea of eating turkey makes them clench their stomach and feel sick;
  • Constantly changing the radio to avoid Christmas carols and Cliff Richard;
  • The idea of an office party makes them flashback to drinking, dancing and vomit;
  • If male, shaving their movember beard as don’t want to be mistaken for him.

There is no known cure for Santaphobos but remember it is optional to join in Christmas, and nobody should feel they have to give cards or gifts to show how much they love someone as in our thoughts and actions all year. A gift of an hour with loved ones can mean far more than a bottle of wine or diamond ring. Even spending that hour with a friend or neighbour that has no one. Finally, remember it is not a jolly time for everyone, so be respectful to those with Santaphobos as with any other physical or mental disease.

© Fi S. J. Brown

Yule

Sitting in a forest drinking apple cider, listening to the wind blowing and making all the evergreen trees leaves ring out to rejoice the winter solstice is here. Around me the red berries of the holly and white of the mistletoe shine like candles near and far in memory of this year now gone. A small bonfire in the middle of the forest warms both my heart and soul as I am surrounded by nature and thank Mother nature for the gifts that she keeps on giving me. I have put my tent up by the oldest oak tree, to lie in watch for the sun to rise, as on this night my ancestors celebrated the rebirth of the Oak King, the Sun King, the Giver of Life. and warms the frozen Earth; as from this day forward, the days will become longer in the northern hemisphere. So to all this day I wish you a blessed Yule and every day I wish all peace, love, happiness and harmony.

Fi S. J. Brown

I’m dreaming…

I’m dreaming not of a white Christmas, or what gifts I will receive under the tree or in a stocking to mark the 25th of the month for it is after all optional, no matter how much the advertisers and retailers appeal to me. Not everything in life can be bought at a mall or supermarket or on the internet, for what I would like cannot ever be bought or sold.

I dream of a world where we do not feel the need to buy pointless material goods to show our love and thanks for another being in our lives, for our words, thoughts and actions express these daily. Buying a so called gift for someone again and again does not help our economies; it only serves our own egos and makes the rich more money, as many struggle to afford to pay their bills let alone these extras. It is said it is supposed to be about the giving, so why is not giving ourselves not enough?

Therefore, my seasonal wish, hoping one day it may come true, is for a society of collective consciousness that actually cares about and supports each other, animals, children, older people, the poor and vulnerable, depressed and anxious, sick and lonely, regardless of difference, and respecting and loving the world we all share with all its incredible gifts it gives us for free.

© Fi S. J. Brown

Comfort and joy

Tills and bells ring to the tune of the festive season, mimicking the sound of Santa Claus’ sleigh on that night that make young and old rejoice. Yet every night in the sky the stars ring out but few stop to listen to them toll, as grown deaf to their gentle chimes. They bring comfort and joy wherever they ring, but many would rather the sound of a new iPhone 6 held in their hands.

Do not let the ransom notes of the advertisements tease and torment the soul, and fill it with nothing but greed and envy instead of glowing from inside out like the moon. A gift does not have to be bought to show the sounds of our heart when the recipient is near, for it echoes in our words and actions every day; feeling the most precious gifts of all – love, peace, hope and light.

© Fi S. J. Brown