Thursday, December 22, 2011

Winter Solstice

At Midwinter—also known as the Winter Solstice—it's time to say goodbye to the old and welcome the new. We bid farewell to the Holly King and welcome the Oak King (that's him in my illustration above). With him we welcome the return of the sun and green (eventually) begins to envelope the earth. After today—the shortest day of the year—the earth begins to wake up from its slumber, then the days start getting longer and warmer ... but before all that it gets snowier here in the Northeast!

At Midsummer—also known as the Summer Solstice—the Holly King slays the Oak King to rule over the winter months. The days become shorter as we say farewell to the sun until the Winter Solstice comes around again on December 21st, when  mother nature shuts down for her winter slumber. This almost doesn't make sense when you consider those warm summer days, but there you have it.

Both solstices are symbolic of an eternal cycle of fertility, growth, death and rebirth. Happy winter solstice, and hooray for longer days!

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