Saturday, November 13, 2010

7 Swords

I have been spending a substancial amount of time down town this autumn season.  Truth be told, I have always spent a substancial amount of time in the city's core, but it seem to me to be more pertinent now, somehow.  As the weather turns, and the crisp turns to cold, and the sun hangs low in the gaps between the buildings, I know that winter is upon us all.  Walking along Ste. Catherine's, it is hard, this time of year, not to feel like a thief, slipping in and out of the crowds, alone despite the masses, waiting with the crows for the death of the year...
Some of my fondest memories of of downtown, my dearly beloved Ville-Marie, are of Christmas, with the mad energy of the commercial hum, the lights in the streets, and the vast Christmas tree in PVM, like a beacon at the end of McGill College, itself all lit up against the darkest part of the year...
I saw it once, during one of those winter snowfalls that drives everyone into safer, warmer places than the street, and the sound dies in the softness of the fallen snow.  Looking down McGill College, seemingly alone in the world aside from her, in the silence, it was beautiful, in that sublime, ineffable way I imagine mystical experiences to be.  I don't suppose I'll ever forget that.
The tree is up now, in the pre-advent advent of mid-November.  Last I checked, McGill College does not yet have her lights, but I am sure they will come.  Christmas, and it's lights and pagan traditions of yearly rebirth, will replace the Autumn mortuary edge that has predominated my downtown for weeks now.
I've revived, in my own attempt to light up the dark, a scarf that my sister knit for me many years ago.  It is bright, and long, colourful, and whimsical.  It is unique, hand made from a made up pattern, and even now, many years later, seems to radiate some of the warmth and kindness I know my sister felt as she knit it.  In it, I feel a tiny bit safer against the fall of the year, against the cold, and the dark.

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