"One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture
and, if possible, speak a few reasonable words." ~Goethe

~ also, if possible, to dwell in "a house where all's accustomed, ceremonious." ~Yeats

Friday, December 14, 2012

Day of Light

Wall Tile for Lucia Day
Erkers Marie Persson

As with so many of the December customs, St. Lucia's Feast Day on the 13th is a celebration of light, vision, and enlightenment. Lucia, Lucy, Lux, Lucis -- all refer to Light. St. Lucia is a bringer of light -- in the form of candles, and breakfast in bed, early in the morning. And, as one who was violently deprived of her own eyesight, she has also become the patron saint of the blind.

Yesterday, Gerry and I brainstormed for a couple of songs in keeping with the day and came up with these; neither Christmas songs nor St. Lucy songs -- but a couple of our favorites on the theme of Light:

Blinded by the Light
"Mama always told me not to look into the eye's of the sun
But mama, that's where the fun is . . .
I tripped the merry-go-round
With this very unpleasin', sneezin' and wheezin,
the calliope crashed to the ground . . . "

Bruce Springsteen
as performed by
Manfred Mann's Earth Band


I Saw the Light
"It was late last night
I was feeling something wasn't right
There was not another soul in sight
Only you, only you . . .
Then you gazed up at me and the answer was plain to see
'Cause I saw the light in your eyes . . . "

Todd Rundgren




a Christmas song of "luminous light," perfect for the occasion:

Star of Bethlehem
lyrics by Leslie Bricusse
music by John Williams
from the Home Alone Soundtrack

Star of Bethlehem shining bright,
bathing the world in heav'nly light.
Let the glow of your distant glory
fill us with hope this Christmas night.

Star of innocence, star of goodness.
Gazing down since time began.
You who've lived through endless ages,
view with love the age of man.

Star of beauty hear our plea,
whisper your wisdom tenderly.
Star of Bethlehem set us free,
make us a world we long to see.

Star of Bethlehem, star on high,
miracle of the midnight sky.
Let your luminous light from heaven
enter our hearts and make us fly.

Star of happiness, star of wonder.
You see everything from afar.
Cast your eye upon the future,
make us wiser than we are.

Star of gentleness hear our plea,
whisper your wisdom tenderly.
Star of Bethlehem set us free
make us a world we long to see.


Thanks to my friend Cate
for these darling little Lucia Day Stickers


The most famous poem for this day,
John Donne's "Nocturnal Upon St. Lucy's Day"
written back when the Winter Solstice occurred earlier in the month,
is featured in its entirety on an interesting blog: Gates of Vienna

It opens . . .

Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's,
Lucy's, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks;
The sun is spent, and now his flasks
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays;
The world's whole sap is sunk . . .

And closes . . .

Since she enjoys her long night's festival,
Let me prepare towards her, and let me call
This hour her vigil, and her eve, since this
Both the year's, and the day's deep midnight is."

Click to hear it read aloud.


See also my post from last year: "Santa Lucia"

Betsy McCall Celebrates Lucia Day


And take a look at this 2007 post,
direct from Sweden,
by Tiffany!

Next Fortnightly Post
Friday, December 28th

Between now and then, read
THE QUOTIDIAN KIT ~ "Day of Light"
my shorter, almost daily blog posts

Looking for a good book? Try
my running list of recent reading

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