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Winter Nights

It is December 1 and Christmas is just around the corner. The last few days I recalled what it was like in rural northern Alberta at this time of the year. We used to sit upstairs and look out the window on cold, cold nights shimmering with white. What caught my eye and ear was the magic provided by the Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis. They don’t appear in Edmonton as I recall them from my childhood memories. What message was in those celestial colours and sounds?

Small children–

Breathlessly wait,

Peer through frosted window

Soak it in.

Heavens ripple–

Lights undulated;

A celebratory fury

An indisputable guide.

This old house speaks;

Nature answers–

Crackles from the heavens

Sweet symphonic sounds.

Earth’s floor–

Blanketed in white

Celestial colours shimmer

Captures young eyes.

A vivid winter scene,

A sensual, sensory palette,

Reminds me–

Christ’s Mass draws near.


The photo came from Seven Wonders of Canada.


About ivonprefontaine

In keeping with bell hooks and Noam Chomsky, I consider myself a public and dissident intellectual. Part of my work is to move beyond (transcend) institutional dogmas that bind me to defend freedom, raising my voice to be heard on behalf of those who seek equity and justice in all their forms. I completed my PhD in Philosophy of Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA. My dissertation and research was how teachers experience becoming teachers and their role as leaders. I focus on leading, communicating, and innovating in organizations. This includes mindfuful servant-leadership, World Cafe events, Appreciative Inquiry, and expressing one's self through creativity. I offer retreats, workshops, and presentations that can be tailored to your organzations specific needs. I published peer reviewed articles about schools as learning organizations, currere as an ethical pursuit, and hope as an essential element of adult eductaion. I published three poems and am currently preparing my poetry to publish as an anthology of poetry. I present on mindful leadership, servant leadership, schools as learning organizations, how teachers experience becoming teachers, assessement, and critical thinking. I facilitate mindfulness, hospitality retreats. and World Cafe Events using Appreciative Inquiry. I am writing and researching about various forms of leadership, how teachers inform and form their identity as a particular teacher, schools as learning organizations, hope and its anticipatory relationship with the future, and hope as an essential element in learning.

17 responses »

  1. Beautiful poem and fab photo. I love the way you give glory to God in most of what you write. 🙂

  2. I know I will never have any chance to look at Northern Light, but by reading your poem and photo, I think is good enough! Thanks for sharing ivon!

  3. Lovely poem. You’ve perfectly captured those childhood moments of anticipation leading up to the holidays!

  4. Good Inspirational poem.

  5. That’s a lovely poem. I remember seeing the northern lights when I was young in Newfoundland, although not all the time.

  6. I lived on a lake in the Maine woods for 32 winters. Miss the sounds of ice booming, snapping in the trees after an ice storm. Though I don’t miss the cold, there is something compelling about winter and its utter beauty in bleakness. And the northern lights! Ahhhhh …..

    • We have had an unseasonably cold and early winter. In some ways, I miss these, but I think, if we had one like this every year, it would wear thin. I don’t get to see the northern lights from the city, but we see them when we travel a bit.

      • I got very lucky over those years – seeing the northern lights in every imaginable color and configuration. I hope you get to see them soon! Living in those kinds of winters, it’s a nice offset to the hard work of shoveling and freezing! 😉

  7. I love the vivid picture that you paint and the wistful, wonder-filled tone. Cheers


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