The bare landscape sighs,
Dreaming of its fields pocked white,
Dappled green, and gold
Finches spill thistle
Wearing winter-dust plumage
As I wait, impatient for yellow

As I write this, there is one yellow daffodil half in bloom in my front garden. Perhaps in a week, when you open your Beacon, there will be more. For now, it is a time of not quite yet, an in-between time.

I sense the beginning of an in-between time for this congregation, as well—and for me as my retirement date approaches. Members of the USNF Board of Trustees have been preparing materials to help prospective interim ministers decide whether Northampton is a place they might want to spend the next two years. I have been starting to look at my books and papers, asking myself what I need to keep and what can and should go.

People are asking me what plans I have for the future. I have recently joined the UU Service Committee Board. Toward the end of this month, Booker and I will travel with other Board members, staff, and supporters to learn about the work UUSC is engaging with in Poland. We’ll meet in Warsaw with leaders of organizations that have been committed since the beginning of the war in Ukraine to helping refugees and other people who face multiple forms of oppression (e.g.people of color, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, Roma). We’ll also travel to Krakow and tour Auschwitz, and we’ll have structured opportunities to reflect together. I feel fortunate to have been asked to join the UUSC Board, and I look forward to working and learning with them over the next few years.

I also look forward to sharing some of our experiences in Poland with you when I return—and to my remaining months here.
Ever grateful to serve as your minister,

Janets signature