As we slide into the holidays and sweep towards the new year, events are in a swirl and spiraling mostly downwards it would appear, at least in Washington, DC where I live.

Photo Credit: Julia Malone

Stop! A voice insists in my head.

Pause. Watch. Listen.

Turn off the car radio, the tv news, the commentators, the politicians, at least for a moment.

Go to the park. Or to the country. Allow space to receive other thoughts.

Hear the wind rustling through a green bush at the edge of the parking lot.

See the wind knocking off the last leaves of a tree.

Watch the flag, still at half mast, saluting the wind.

Remember the three-year-old on stage last night at the community theater, trying to keep up and match steps with the older children.

Enjoy the three dogs—black, blonde and brown retrievers—running across the open field.

Hear the carols:Sleigh bells ringing…Lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you…”

No sleighs in Washington, but the carols ring out, and traditions wrap around in old words and sentiments even as new words—”border wall, shutdown, impeachment, resignation, fraud, lies”—fill the public discourse.

Time to get out of town?

Or just time to pause, watch, listen and try to see and hear other harmonies.

Giddy up! Giddy up! Let’s go. Looking for the Wonderland of Snow!

Happy holidays to All!