Sunday, December 21, 2008

Merry Christmas (I Love You)

The best Christmas album to come out in this millennium is, I think, Hawksley Workman's "Almost A Full Moon." In this, he celebrates family and friends and the holiday season. This song in particular speaks to the warmth and love that exists despite the unexpected and tragic events that happen in the world.

I'm not going home for Christmas this year. "Home" in this instance meaning where my mom lives. I won't be waiting up with my brothers until midnight or one in the morning to sneak downstairs to open stockings that "Santa" has just recently filled for us with Archie comics, clementines and Kinder surprise eggs. I won't be going to Burlington to see Grandma and Grandpa and Aunt Barb and Uncle Peter and Sam and Alex, and to not eat turkey and cranberry sauce but scarf down mashed potatoes and stovetop stuffing. I won't be hearing Grandpa's recitation of "Twas the Night Before Christmas" or singing carols with my mom and whomever else can be convinced, around the piano.

My brother Geoff will likely not be there to wait up for stockings either. He's just moved into a new apartment with his new wife Patricia. And my brother Ted won't arrive in Toronto until 11:30 am Christmas Day. There was no Chester family dinner at the Old Mill restaurant this year. And Sean lives in PEI this season, so my Christmas mix making was even independent of him.

But on Christmas Eve I will be seeing my brother Ted and his fiance Hayley at my Dad's house in Porter's Lake, where he lives with his wife Susan. Christmas always manages to feel Christmasey, wherever I am. I feel blessed.

I meant to write all kinds of blog entries about Christmas songs this month, but shopping and work and house cleaning has left me with little free time, and, I suppose, I just haven't felt the exactly right kind of inspiration for writing as much as I'd like.

Friends and family near and far: I wish you all Happy Holidays. I wish we could all be together. You're dear to me and in my thoughts and my heart.

Merry Christmas (I Love You) - Hawksley Workman

If god takes you he leaves
a huge footprint of love
and kindness behind
which is where you once stood

And I know you're afraid
to get on the plane
after what happened that day
and selfishly I want you here in my way

But animals come
and animals go
and love is just a laundry line
we hang on until

we're dried out by the sun
and when you think your turn is done
you end up getting dirty
and it's all again begun

Now words i think are just
a noisy dirty wind
makes the trouble we get in
so why do we speak

Now we made another war,
that's what men are good for
men with stupid insecurities
and not a lot more

And satisfied they try
its written about again
but who the hell reads history?
apparently not men

'Cause nothing's guaranteed
except the politics of need
did the Romans see the ship go down
or were they asleep?

I shouldn't expect to live
and I shouldn't expect to die
but I wouldnt mind being beside you, dear
on that laundry line to dry

And for my grandma and my brother
my father and my mother
and you my sweetest lover
to you all I will say

Merry Christmas I love you
and god is above you
Merry Christmas I love you
and god is above you

Merry Christmas I love you

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