Christmas morning I write to Justine and read what I've written, and eventually cull four paragraphs totaling almost two thousand words about what I have learned about Love in, through and with her, and send something closer to anodyne, being cautious, insecure, careful, et cetera. We get greedy, we get presumptuous, and we end being the wrong person's truth and way and life and what can be done about it at this late and getting later juncture? Jasper offers to come by with his Bobcat and knock down a couple of stumps, which I notice is not okay with me because the stumps function as symbols of my unworthiness and being unworthy is still valuable (I know who could help but do I know how to let them help) and when I tell him this he laughs and says, "when you're ready, brother." Gun shots a little after dusk, end of deer season. There are prayers we don't notice we pray, and there are loves who teach us a new way of praying that is noticing itself. From the Letter of James, a helpful reference to "the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change." Going out in heavy rain to check on the horses, who stand still and silent in the late December downpour, gazing at me where I stand in wet snow, thinking all the thoughts I think and all the feelings I feel when I balance so precariously (I wanted to write preciously) on the brink of healing, the beginning of relationship, the meeting of East and West, et cetera. Rebirth is death and death is not a thing of which we ought be either frightened or ashamed. I don't want to write another sentence without her by my side but nobody ever asked me what I wanted. Oh you who are the desert's end, my earthly delight and spiritual bower, be with me in the flesh, and build with me our bed. Om Shanti, Om Shanti, Amen.