Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Bonnie Goes Blogistic on Christmas Trees

Reflection on Imperfection


‘Tis the season for unreason

when green spills from wallets

of those believing in traditional pleasing.

‘Tis the season when people pine for a fine Christmas tree—

white pine, balsam fir, white spruce, Fraser fir,  Douglas fir, scotch pine,


but it must be a wintergreen, evergreen, ever-perfect, perfectly-shaped

Barbie bush. 

In the nippy air, hundreds of Barbies form green lines

with straight spines, very vertical trunks, ample branches

each with a single perfectly-pointed top

waiting for its traditional spot up the

angel’s ...tush.


Partly hidden ornaments adorn lush limbs,

shiny balls peer from green mazes

and candy canes lavish properly perky

branch tips.

But Barbie’s lavish bushy branches

leave little room for ornaments

lest adornments detract from her own

flawless beauty.


I wander far and wide, bucking the tide

wondering why I must settle for popular perception.

I search for Barbie’s ugly cousin,

a form, a shape that doesn’t fit the mold,

flat-chested for small house



It’s the wind-blown hair, the hole in the sock, the scrape on the knee, the spaghetti stain on the shirt, the pimple on the nose that tell a story

of  living.


I like a crooked smile, spaces between teeth, scraggly hair, spindly legs

and skinny arms that reach out

open to discovery.


I want a tree that doesn’t hide,

that opens wide to embrace pride

held in accessories’ histories, their stories and the

love they imply.


I seek a spindly tree, the ugly factor with character,

one willing to show open spaces,

places for treasured ornaments grown dear over the years...


those that have lost their shine, are ragged from playful cats, have missing parts, the hippo of bedtime stories, an apple from a student, a violin recalling cacophonous practice, clothes-pin soldiers formed by tiny hands, hummingbirds like ones covering a morning field years ago in the Grand Canyon, a plastic dog a reminder of a lost pet, baby’s first Christmas 25-years ago, grandmother’s crocheted hobbyhorse and mouse, eloquent velvet-covered and pearl-studded balls made by a nearly blind friend

long gone.


And then I see it—the orphan cousin in a heap

apart from the collection,

far from customers’ inspection.

I reflect on its simple beauty.

Missing branches leave

room for us.


I like my new bare and slightly crooked tree,

I like the way you hang your hand-painted sand dollar next to my beaded bird.

It is in the spaces where

we hang our love.


Perfection isn’t about shape and complexion.

Perfection lies in connections...

how we create them,

how we fill in and connect those spaces

that life gives us.

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