this was the year of traditions begun. the world still dark, the morning still early, i climbed into my uncle's car. we drove out to the ocean, where the rippling sea fuses with the sky. white-headed eagles were perched still in trees. they cocked back their heads, opened their hooked mouths and screamed.
across an empty parking lot where once a cat had followed us. over driftwood pale with frost and sand hardened by the cold, we walked. our breath came out of us in thin plumes. it rose above us and hung there like smoke signals to the gods.
there were gulls on the water, gulls sifting through sand, gulls with their grey backs and faces, their opportunism. i have a tarot deck whose theme is birds. the gull encourages us to communicate.
there was a small group of us gathered there, my uncle and i, and some other pagans. some of them i'd never met before, but they were kind and beautiful and their vibrations were gentle.
i put my nikon to my face, it was like my third eye become tangible. in the breathless intermission before the true dawn, i captured that womb-pink sky, and we waited. we were patient.
"it's coming...." we whispered. "it's coming....."
there was a transition we barely noticed, something on which we couldn't put a finger, but the world was then suddenly different. the sun ascended from behind the horizon, opening the sky with its burning.
the third eye opened and shut. each image different than the one before it as the sun ascended.
"this is rebirth of light."
"the days become longer now, longer than this one, longer than the ones before this."
the sun rose until it was finished rising. until it was suspended over the mountains, and smeared like a fire across the water. there was a fullness in our lungs from it. the light came into us and reached into all of our corners.
"it's here...." we whispered. "it's here....."