In the Context of a New Year

The first day of the New Year provides a convenient milestone, a moment ideal for declaring a fresh start. Then, again, the first Thursday of every month offers the same opportunity, as does the first day of each week. When we want or need a moment to serve as a marker of a new beginning, we choose whatever artificial origination point that suits us. That power of choice allows us to begin anew if we stumble. Whether we opt to select a new week, a new month, a new sunrise, or some other moment, any occasion that is to our liking gives us a chance for a clean start. Today, January 1, is as good a moment as any to declare a rebirth of optimism and all the good, positive things that flow from it. That having been said, behaving like a Pollyanna is pointless. Achieving desired objectives requires effort and the willingness to confront and overcome challenges. An awareness of those necessary components of success goes a long way toward reaching a figurative destination.


The grey skies of recent days are no longer. Today, as I look out my window, I see blue sky beyond the naked hardwoods and evergreens. Though the sky is not a deep cerulean blue, it is sufficiently clear and readily fits into the definition of “sky blue,” which can be any shade of blue one wishes. The horizon, though, seems lighter…almost white. The transition between blue and white is so indistinct that I find it impossible to know where blue ends and white begins; there seems to be no ending and no beginning to those colors in the sky. Infinity is somehow captured in that part of the celestial color wheel that we choose to call “blue.” We might as well call it “clarence.” What’s in a name, after all?


My desk is littered with paper, pens, notebooks, magazines, and all manner of other evidence of my laziness. For days, I’ve been thinking of clearing the desktop; putting things away where they belong. But it’s mostly just thought. Very little action. My dormant motivation must be buried under some of the piles of stuff before me. I would peer beneath some of them to look for it, but my inclination to do so is sorely lacking.


A week ago, I allowed myself to play with the idea of buying a new car. That idea is no longer even remotely interesting to me. And I cannot even fathom how I found it appealing in the least. Importance is contextual. Everything is.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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