(image from The Marketing Lens )

the table creaks as a toddler
in red overalls and a brown beanie
reaches to grab one of the presents
scattered among the silverware
and empty mugs of hot chocolate

his aunt, fourteen with bouncy braids
puts an ornament on the tree and
spins around on her fuzzy reindeer socks
singing “Santa Baby” and making
both parents laugh, clutching their sides

gramma is slumped in a chair with her
knitting needles and a ball of Lion Brand
Christmas yarn that is rolling across
the wood floor, while a splotchy terrier
sniffs it and then trots away barking in glee

a father is stroking a mother’s hand
and she looks up at him with sparkly eyes
like the Christmas lights outside that dance
to tunes no one can hear, and the solitary deer
that is glowing beside the dead rose bushes

and i stand in front of the eerie tv, in my house
that remains like a shell of wrapping paper
after the gift is long gone-watching these people
and their Christmas celebrations until the commercial
dissolves into static, like it always does here at home







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