When a tree comes down
you might think about your mother.
Each little ornament,
gold and silver
no longer glowing.
Lights come away
from fragile branches whose flecks of green
you will have to vacuum later,
after it’s all ended and
time crescendos into a silence
like winter afternoons.
You might think about the past year
and other trees
and those you have shared warm nights on ships far away with--
or sisters and nieces you wish you could
every single day.
When each glass piece gets individually wrapped
you might consider briefly, the ugliness
of some places and people
in the world
You might hope for better days
and better times.
It may cross your mind that sometimes,
time passes as in a slow draining tub.
And you’ll be reminded
to buy Drain-O next time you go to a store.
When each precious ornament and all the moments attached
gets wrapped and safely placed
into a shy cardboard box
that wants nothing
of what it contains—no special preference—
you might remember
what love is like.
The sweet and bitter
or the tenderness of a touch in the morning hours
just before coffee yanks you into
You might be sad that another year has ended,
when a tree comes down
and things change.
And you might too.
"Young woman decorates the Christmas tree" -- Marcel Rieder