Merry Ninth Day of Christmas!

Yes, we’re still in the Season of Christmas and we’ve just begun a new year.   What of this New Year? What of the future?  The 1969 Nobel Prize in Literature winner, Samuel Beckett, wrote: “Dance first.  Think later.  It’s the natural order.” 

Perhaps, on this the Ninth Day of Christmas, the “nine ladies dancing” of the Twelve Days of Christmas could offer some  encouragement for the new year to look beyond negativity which may have carried over into this new year … dance!  

But, how can we dance when there is so much negativity and fear? We can still dance … dance on our own:  in the kitchen, in the entrance to our home, in the garage, in the Studio, in the bedroom, between the rooms of our home.

But what if we are not able to do that?  What if we are in a wheelchair, need to use a walker/cane?  We can still dance – in the wheelchair, with our walker/cane, in our imagination!

Dancing (even imagining ourselves dancing) is great exercise … for our body, our mind, and our spirit.  When we are dealing with physical or emotional pain be that grief, depression, addiction, relationship issues, financial issues, housing issues, employment issues, war, etc., we are living with high levels of stress, our body becomes rigid and tight, our mind can’t think as well as it usually  can, and our spirit is drained.

But when we dance and experience the joy of the moment, there is a release of endorphins which can lower physical, emotional and spiritual pain, give a natural ‘high’ increasing metabolism, blood and oxygen flow, and re-connect us to our spirit.  In other words,
dance can be a spiritual connection!

John O’Donahue, Irish author, priest, and poet was known for popularizing Celtic spirituality and this part of his “Beannacht” poem is a gentle reminder of the importance of dance to bring balance into our physical and spiritual lives.

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.
[“Beannacht” is the Gaelic word for “blessing”]

Let’s nurture our spirit as this New Year unfolds and let the dancing ladies of the Ninth Day of the Twelve Days of Christmas encourage us (in the words by Sydney Carter set to the Shaker “Simple Gifts” melody ) to “Dance then, where ever you may be!”   

Happy Ninth Day of Christmas!  Let’s dance!

© June Maffin
Calligraphy artwork © Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord   Used by permission


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The Soulistry Christmas reflection series is published each day during the Season of Christmas (Christmas Day to Epiphany, January 6th), offering a lovely stretch of time to reflect, enjoy, delight in, and consider how we can bring a little bit of Christmas into our life and the lives of others every day.

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May the Twelve Days of Christmas be a reminder that Christmas isn’t just “one day” but can continue to be alive in hearts and lives every day – even beyond the Season of Christmas.   🙂

The Soulistry Christmas series is posted each day during the Season of Christmas along with other Soulistry reflections can be found at and
May the Twelve Days of Christmas be a reminder that Christmas isn’t just “one day.” The Spirit of Christmas can continue to be alive every day – even beyond the Season of Christmas.   🙂