Christmas Memories, by Victoria Weitgenant

Our memories derive 
From what our family has given
and what lessons we took away. 
I would pray the utmost prayer, 
That I can give the same to my children
Cheated are the Children, 
Who see visions of boxes, 
Instead of joy. 
Wronged were they in youth, 
for getting every toy. 
For never will I remember 
What lay beneath the tree, 
Who got the biggest box,
Or who Santa’s favorite would be. 
Department stores and superficialities, 
Fade to the abyss. 
Sausages and eggnog 
Are things on which I reminisce. 
Singing beneath copper lighting, 
With echoes of hopeful choirs ringing in my ear, 
Looking into the face of Christ,
Realizing why we are all here. 
Numbing toes amidst the pine, 
While grandmother picks the perfect tree,
Being sure to take her time, 
as Santa wreaks of whiskey. 
Handmade stockings and hidden pickles,
Feel cosy by the fireplace, 
While bear claws bake and women complain, 
about not hesitating to stuff their face. 
Driving down to Florida, 
Excited before the sun. 
Crammed into a minivan, 
Trying to create our own fun. 
Reindeer food in Nana’s yard, 
and Papa jolly as ever. 
Thinking we are all-grown-up,
Because we got some wine at dinner. 
Pressing a rifle into my shoulder, 
With Father supporting behind. 
Sneaking cookie dough with mother,
Who has Holiday Inn on rewind. 
Smells of fudge and goodies, 
Trigger a comfort somewhere deep, 
Playing Euchre with uncles, 
while they play dirty and cheat. 
My memories are of family and friends, 
Swapping stories and laughing aloud.
Entertaining guests, 
Or all together going out. 
Movies and Hot cocoa, 
Carols and sparkling lights. 
Snow forts and balls of dirt, 
Parents reading Twas the Night. 
Though we all have split our paths, 
And trains now bring us together,
Home will always feel the same. 
Holidays anywhere else, 
Would fail to ever be better. 
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