It’s Hard to Love January (a poem)

It’s Hard to Love January

It’s hard to love January.
The glamor of Christmas is far gone,
The lights put away and the tree out by the street.
New Year’s resolutions are already forgotten by the final week,
The weather is miserable in the northern hemisphere, with no joy in sight.
The party is over. All that’s left is the mess.

But this is when we pick up ourselves,
Pick up our lives, and dust off our knees.
This is when we put those boxes away of expectations that have failed us.
As January gives way to February, we accept that this is the new year.
We accept that this is how it will be, and we lift up our chin,
And move on.

Winter’s breath is cold, its icy grip on our lungs and heart
Can chill even the brightest spirits.
But when we look January in the eye, and say,
“I have no fear of you,”
January may give the tiniest glimpse,
The hint of a smile
In a cloudy day that doesn’t quite bear the same gloom as the others.

For even January knows there is a thirty-first.
There is an end.
February is so fleeting,
In many places they even take a week off from school
To go sledding or skiing or stay in from the cold.
March will soon be here, and though March can be ugly, the days grow longer.

It’s January that is the harshest of all,
But January knows its days are numbered,
The end always comes,
And we move on.

This year, January, I salute you.
You kept us on our toes.
We almost lost our country, more than once, it seems.
But here we are, the final days,
And your fingers are relaxing your grip on us,
For you know
You have to let us go.

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