It hasn’t gotten as cold as I remember.
This time years ago, I was wearing a
double-lined, rust-colored coat from
the Duluth catalogue; matching boots
I prefer a mild winter, with enough
cold to contemplate words like “alone”
and “silence.” If we are in the habit of
preferring, I’d like my mountains snow-
covered but my black, asphalt streets
dry – with no salt to muck up the
underbelly of my truck.
Winter is a clear head; free from
summer’s buzz. All the better thoughts
have settled to the bottom; sifted.
Winter is a reflection and a state of
quiet – no longer heading, but headed.
It feels good to take in a deep,
December breath and feel complete;
like I have managed to move more than
In January, I write letters to my future self.
In December, I read them and laugh; goals
too broad in breadth. Then, calm as I wish,
revel in all the pleasant surprises, content.
My perspective is real wide now,
but my vision is like way narrow.
The word “Love” sounds like
when you shout into a bottomless well.
Well, maybe there’s a bottom,
but how would we know, ya know?
We keep seeing you everywhere.
I saw you a whole lot today in the
back of the TJ Maxx on Madison.
There were those peppermint-bark tins
that you used to get, I was gunna get Miss
a picture frame, but I couldn’t wait in the line.
You waited in every line for us.
I don’t know how ya did it.
You said every Christmas would be small,
but that was always a lie.
I don’t think you meant to lie.
I think you genuinely thought
you couldn’t pull it off some years,
but oh, man you did.
I don’t know what I’ll miss more,
your Christmas village magic –
or the thought of you waiting in all
those lines; a big smile on your face
when you began to realize … that year
was gunna be bigger than the last … again.