Poetry War – Christmas Past
I think Christmas was my mom’s favorite holiday of the year. All the very best things in her world happened at Christmas:
Everyone in her family who lived out of town showed up a few days before Christmas and stayed through the holidays.
Family who lived within walking distance or a few hour’s drive arrived on Christmas eve after supper for the opening of one gift and stayed for coffee and the specialty sweet of the house, then we would all walk to the nearest relative’s home in a group, watch them open one gift while enjoying a good visit, another coffee and a portion of the specialty sweet of that house, and carry on to the next house. It was an awesome treat for all the kids who actually got about five desserts in one night.
Mom got to plan and prepare a meal large enough to feed a small country for a week while all the women old enough to help peeled potatoes and onions, made salads, gossipped about anything and everything, shared recipies and banned the men from the kitchen until dinner was ready.
All the babies in the family were in the house at the same time and she could feed, change diapers, hug, hold, kiss, coo and snuggle with them to her heart’s content.
The house was bursting at the seams with excited kids running from room to room, the sounds of football games on TV and the rumble of men’s voices discussing guns, hunting, boats, hunting dogs, sports and target shooting.
Everyone sat down to dinner at the same time in the same house at a number of tables set up in every nook and cranny of space available, laden with plates full of turkey and dressing, ham, green beans, mashed potatoes, candied yams, home made biscuits, salad, cranberries and horse radish.
The entire clan went to church with her for the anual Christmas Contada, the only day of the year a lot of us saw the inside of a church.
Mom held the family together and Christmas will never again be the same for our family.
This is for my mom:
The Joy of Christmas
Some people think kids are the heart of Christmas,
and though I agree they’re importance is high,
the true driving force and glue for the season
is someting bigger than all those small fry.
With unbounded love and the joy of together,
it’s Mothers who hold in their capable hands
the strings that protect, guide and nurture the family
with no reservatons, conditions, demands.