Colour My World

Art by Ainsley Harrop

There was once an elephant who
Was tired of being wrinkled and gray.
He didn’t see what he could do.
So he lay there the livelong day.

Envying the sauntering peacock
Who flaunted his brilliant blue,
And even those black and white
Like the zebras at the zoo.

There he sat, a dejected lump
Till along came a little mouse
Who ran into him with a bump.
Then asked, “What is the matter?”

So the elephant told his tale piteously
As he carefully guarded his trunk.
“I need to watch,” said he warily
Mice can be so hard to get rid of!”

The mouse patiently listened
Until the story was done.
Then said to him, “You know,
I’m gray, too, but life’s still so much fun.”

“You’re big and I’m little
So it’s somewhat strange to me
You’ve made your world so small.
It’s the big picture you need to see.

Open your eyes, take in the view
And use those huge ears to listen!
See the colours that glow all round you.
You’ll soon dance with the music again!

There’s the blue of the sky
And the green of the grass
There’s a scarlet cardinal
Flitting in the tree I just passed.

The sun is shining yellow
Hyacinths purple and blue
Look! Orange tiger lilies and
Pink petunias in front of you!

So instead of wishing
You are what you’re not
Spending the day whining
For all you’ve not got.

Open all the gifts that you see
Though they seem ordinary
They’re part of the world God made.
Live joyfully, live gratefully.

We were given a wonderful world
There’s always something new
Come, friend, let’s travel together
So we can share it with you!”

                                                            Trudy Prins

Winter Pleasures

Annoyingly, I had forgotten something in town, which necessitated going back immediately.   As a result, we opted to change up our regular local walking route, choosing to take the Pinafore Park trail around “Lake” Margaret.

The park was a popular destination, the weather having co-operated by being cold enough to allow skating.  It was exhilarating to see people out: the day before,  we were told, the over-65 seniors challenged the kids in a game and “got their butts kicked.”     Arena sports are currently off-limits, so this brought a bit of impromptu joy into kids’ lives.   It was an old-fashioned scene, harkening back to the days before sports were so organized.  It brought back memories of happy childhood hours skating on the little pond in our farmyard.

Layer on clothes,
Lace up skates
Clomp to the pond
To join our mates.

Venture onto surface ice
Step by step, tiny, halting
Tentative, uncertain
Until we begin a-gliding.

And then we dream of canals
Or maybe a frozen river
So for hours we could skate
On and on, and on forever.

Skating 1967



Photo by Gerd Altmann, Pixabay

As the planets in the sky have blazed
While we stood in awe, amazed,
As we peer into worlds unknown
Where is the path that leads us home?

Lord, You are the truth, the life, the way
The Spirit who leads and guides each day.
The future leads through uncertain place
We are in desperate need of grace.

And as we on Your life do gaze
Our lives in words and deeds shall praise
Your love, your courage as our fears you faced
We journey on this path that first you traced.

On this past winter solstice, December 21, 2020, those of us fortunate enough to have a clear sky caught a glimpse of Jupiter and Saturn, the two largest planets in our solar system in the best conjunction since 1226 AD.  The effect is that of a bright star, dubbed a Christmas star.

Was there something similar in their starry night sky that prompted the wise men to journey to find a king?  We wonder if we can trace the path of our past and future in the stars, or whether we really are made of stardust.  We wonder what earth’s future is in this one galaxy, itself among many other galaxies.  We are on a journey, and it seems earth itself is travelling, too.

As we ponder our place in this universe, our paths seem earthbound, mundane.  Daily walks have become more complicated as we zigzag our way around each other to maintain pandemic social distance, a kind of “2020s shuffle.”  The old Family Circle featured cartoons that tracked a child’s random path around a neighbourhood.  Who knows?  Maybe someday we will be able to download a similar history of our lifetime “travels,” from a recording GPS.

There are times when the path has been arduous, or frightening, or seemed to go nowhere.  But we are comforted in knowing that we have a companion who pioneered our earthly and celestial ways.   It is this same Jesus  who now prepares the destination, and who will be welcoming us home.