Happy New Year: Beginning Again

Columbia Lights
Columbia Lights

Happy New Year!  I wish a wonderful 2016 for all of my readers and friends. Many people make resolutions on New Year’s, but I like to choose a word for the year. How does that work?  It’s always a challenge to settle on just one word to guide my year–last year it was “focus,” and I was indeed focused on getting out my first book of poetry. I also use the word of the year to guide my decisions and to keep me centered. But I was really stuck on what word to choose for 2016. At first I was leaning towards the word “intention,” which implies a calm sort of approach to life. But I wasn’t sure that was the word I needed. So I turned to my angel cards.

Word of the Year, 2016
Word of the Year, 2016

Over the years, I’ve used my angel cards for guidance, humor, and the invisible support that angels are thought to provide. I keep my cards in a lovely container on the end table next to the chair where I read in the morning. This morning I chose the word “harmony” as my word for 2016.  It resonated with me, especially because it seems like I am always trying to balance the various aspects of my life–teaching, writing, socializing, volunteering, and reading.  So often I feel out of whack, like one area of my life is getting more of me at the expense of another area.  I’m content with the word harmony and look forward to seeing how I can apply that idea to my life.  How about you? Have you ever chosen a word for the year?

Here’s a poem about beginning again, something the new year always affords us.  Enjoy!


Begin again to the summoning birds
to the sight of light at the window,
begin to the roar of morning traffic
all along Pembroke Road.

Every beginning is a promise
born in light and dying in dark
determination and exaltation of springtime
flowering the way to work.
Begin to the pageant of queuing girls
the arrogant loneliness of swans in the canal
bridges linking the past and future
old friends passing though with us still.

Begin to the loneliness that cannot end
since it perhaps is what makes us begin,
begin to wonder at unknown faces
at crying birds in the sudden rain
at branches stark in the willing sunlight
at seagulls foraging for bread
at couples sharing a sunny secret
alone together while making good.

Though we live in a world that dreams of ending
that always seems about to give in
something that will not acknowledge conclusion
insists that we forever begin.

~ Brendan Kennelly ~