If ever there was a year to send and receive holiday cards this would be the one. And yet I tied myself up in knots just thinking about it. With so much suffering out there and at the same time so much mistrust, even a peaceful message feels like a cop-out. And sharing the news that Peggi and I are finding it really easy to hunker down would be best kept to ourselves.
Years past we nodded to the solstice, the religious significance of the holiday, winter, the new year and our cats. I drew the frames on one card on our Atari 1040, we did snow angels in the backyard and we dressed up like Spanish royalty. The year we dunked old floppy discs in red and green paint presented a shipping postal meltdown.
My father was never afraid to say what was on his mind in his holiday card. Each featured one of his drawings or paintings, maybe a quote from Chesterton and a message like “The war must stop!” One year, late in his life, he said “Mary and I fill our days recounting memories.” And when he died just days after Christmas he left a layout on his computer for that year’s card, an old photo of us kids and this verse –
“What if you couldn’t remember
Yep!………Return to an event
Where some time was spent
When surrounded by people
Some of the people you bore
But the image you recognize no more
What if you couldn’t remember”
My mother went out with vascular dementia and my father went out like a light.
Maybe we’ll do a Three Kings card this year. El Día de los Reyes Magos.