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[personal profile] jeanvieve
(Since this year I typed it into FB first.)

Dear Great Pumpkin,

I feel such an overwhelming sense of gratitude for your gifts; I have stared at this blank bit of canvas for weeks without quite knowing how to bleed the ink that can paint my feelings for the last year. In seasons past, the knife has been swift and flashing when I come to this time for your honor, this passing of one cycle to another, and the black has flowed out like a river to besmirch the page.

But this is a new beginning, and the ending of a strange year, and more care must be taken to find the right words.

Thank you for the vigil in the distant pumpkin patch. I learned so many important lessons about myself, about other children, about all the ways that you are celebrated even by those who don’t know your name. Some might call you a narrow construct, newly minted for a young consciousness in faraway lands. It must make you smile, your crooked grin bathing them all unaware in all the fear, delight, uncertainty, and wild glee that represent your being. I hope that I represented you well to them, because we all need stories to sustain us and keep us from becoming too grown up.

I stumbled, I think - I didn’t internalize that your visitations are not limited to just one night, let alone one variety of pumpkin patch; I didn’t see that you are for expansion in one season and for pruning in another as the seasons reverse around the world, and so I was caught unaware when your tricks were played upon me in the hours when normally I dream of rain and flowers and Spring. As always , I tried to accept the penance of your wicked abstraction with my own peculiar grace.

And here I am in the patch I know best, where I can blindly run the furrows and vines with an unconscious understanding of paths and roots under my feet. I know where the gates lie, how the streets and walls frame the soil, and how the moon shifts across the leaves as they rustle with the wind. I feel at home in my vigil. I feel the presence of the boy with the blanket beside me; wise fool, young sage; and feel the kindling of the flame inside me lighting a candle - I hadn’t expected you to send me a present early, but I am glad of it with all my heart. Thank you for the love.

Yet there are still so many other children in the dark, who neither dress up in costume to go door to door, nor linger safe at home under the auspices of their night lights and stuffed guardians. These children have been on my mind, caught between the delights of youth and the dark shadows of fear, unable to find the balance that allows them to embrace both as part and parcel of the same season.

How do I help them set aside the noise of absurdity, to accept the witchy shrieks and alarums which pierce the night and still own within them the stillness and quiet of a leaf trembling in the Autumn breeze?

Perhaps I need more silence in myself, so that I can share it with others and teach them how to listen for the dying of the roots, the sloughing of last season’s growth in preparation to lie fallow in the earth so that next season we can grow into something new. In that stillness I will find a sharper blade.

I am, as ever, your obedient.

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jeanvieve

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