How strange that New Year’s Day begins a year
Replete with ice and howling wind and snow,
And quite defying al our New Year’s “cheer”
Brings on the saddest, darkest days we know.
Why do we say January First
Proclaims to one and all our world’s rebirth?
And if for joy and youth and love we thirst,
‘Tis surely spring rejuvenates the earth.
Then let’s call April First our New Year’s Day,
And say the year’s reborn with springtime pleasure;
Let’s cheer the birds’ and plants’ return and say
We’ll bask in sunny warmth and flowery treasure.
On April First our world is born again:
Let’s save our “Happy New Year’s Day!” til then.

A longtime Princeton resident, Cheiten is the author of numerous short stories and poems, several plays, and the Princeton-based novella “The Hidden Ally.” “Changing the Calendar” is a sonnet.

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