The days are growing shorter, a blithe oxymoron
to deceive ourselves with simple sleight of tongue,
while in the dwindling of days lies the melancholy
of December, the mind so tricked by early darkness
it yearns for sleep before the evening meal is done.
No artificial light can rescue us. He tries the light of
football on TV while I try the enlightenment of a
book. His light proves the stronger, though I often
catch him sleeping by it as I invariably do by mine.
Until the winter solstice, the relentless shrinking
binds the world in gloom—each breathing creature,
each seed and tree and patch of moss—all bemoan
the dying of the light as but a mournful prelude
to the dying of our own.
—Margaret Van Every—