Wednesday, December 7, 2011


"All the Christmases roll down the hill towards the Welsh-speaking sea, like a snowball growing whiter and bigger and rounder, like a cold and headlong moon bundling down the sky that was our street; and they stop at the rim of the ice-edged, fish freezing waves, and I plunge my hands in the snow and bring out whatever I can find; holly or robins or pudding, squabbles and carols and oranges and tin whistles, and the fire in the front room, and bang go the crackers, and holy, holy, holy, ring the bells, and the glass bells shaking on the tree, and Mother Goose, and Struwelpeter - oh! the baby burning flames and the clacking scissorman! - Billy Bunter and Black Beauty, Little Women and boys who have three helpings, Alice and Mrs Potter's badgers, penknives and teddy-bears - named after a Mr Theodore Bear, their inventor, or father, who died recently in the United States - mouth-organs, tin-soldiers, and blancmange, and Aunty Bessie playing "Pop Goes the Weasel" and "Nuts in May" and "Oranges and Lemons" on the untuned piano in the parlour all through the thimble-hiding musical-chairing blind-man's-buffing party at the end of the never-to-be-forgotten day at the end of the unremembered year."

This is one of my all-time favorite visions of Christmas.  It's so beautiful, warm, and comforting-- don't you think?  There's something mysterious and Dickensian about it.  The Christmas magic and all that.

Growing up, my mom always put on this Christmas CD.  And, there's this wonderful narrator all the way through it who reads excerpts from various Christmas literature in a bouncing Welsh accent.  This is my very favorite part.  It's from a piece called Memories of Christmas by Dylan Thomas. 

photo via emily 

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