Literary Hook: ‘Unwinding the Old Year’: A poem for the new year

Christine Swanberg
Christine Swanberg

By Christine Swanberg
Author and Poet

Here is a poem for the new year, which is about reflection and new beginnings metaphorically.

Unwinding the Old Year

If each ornament is a memory,

mixed blessings hanging from your tree,

handle them gently, wrapping them

in soft tissue rolled into the box

you will place in a dark basement corner.

In a dark basement corner of your mind

you can box the harder memories

for another year. They are safe

and so are you this day of new beginnings.

Another year has lent its logs to the fire.

Another year has lent its time to you.

So unwind the little lights and lay them

down like large nests, fallow for the winter.

Uncoil the snares and scars the year has wrought.

Conjure all the good from the year’s cornucopia.

From last year’s cornucopia, conjure the good.

Rewind the victories, the delicate surprises,

those things you did not expect but received

among the hard-earned bricks and mortar.

Remember what will buoy you this new year.

This new year, remember what buoys you

through the tumult and chaos that surrounds us.

Remember kindness, that uncle who loved you best.

Recall the ruby amidst the costume jewelry.

Wear it like a talisman through the shining new year.

Christine Swanberg is a local author and poet. She received the Lawrence E. Gloyd Community Impact Award at the 2012 Rockford Area Arts Council State of the Arts Awards.

From the Jan. 7-13, 2015, issue

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