The December Poems: Three

Things come in threes. Death so much so that
breath catches, toes curl, time pauses upon
receiving the news, and every ring of the
phone for the next few weeks sends icy
fear to my core as my brain maps out
the location of each of my people.

Births. My mother, brother, and I all fall
within a ten day span. All three of my
babies slid into this world in less than
a month—with six years between.
When one mama announces a pregnancy,
others quickly follow; something in the water.

Rivers. Dimensions. Stooges. Point turn.
Musketeers. Little pigs. Piece suit. Ring
circus. Legged race. And wishes are best
when the Genie grants you three. Father, son,
and holy spirit; and oh, the three wise men
with their gold, frankincense and myrrh.


The December Poems: Two

The star leans to the left, the point resting on the ceiling,
one holding the other, the way we all should this season
as darkness mixes with light. The tree itself, both
imperfectly perfect and perfectly imperfect with
a fat, round body, a few patchy spots, and strong, sturdy
branches to hold years and years of family memories;

The Christmas tree made of popsicle sticks. A bulb
filled with popcorn, still looking fresh after a decade of
mostly sitting in a box in the basement. Fingerprint
snowmen, glittering snowflakes, ornaments featuring
little faces, the way they were once upon a December;
a testament to how fast time flies, touches us;

Handmade memories hang next to purchased ones:
that first Christmas together, the one with a new baby,
and then another. The last ones purchased by a beloved
grandmother. A dog, a house, and a few dozen fire trucks
among the shiny generics of the season: balls and bulbs,
lights and Santas. They tell the holiday story of who we are; together.

The December Poems: Two // a Christmas series.

Read more of The December Poems.