She keeps looking up at the mistletoe when we are out for our walks and sighing a bit. When I asked her why, she said that when she was younger, the mistletoe was one of the first bits of Christmas that she would bring home.
Now, I have to say, it doesn’t look all that Christmassy to me… just little white balls that she says I am not allowed to play with or eat… But ‘pparently, the stuff is romantic.
Not, she says, just because you get to kiss people who stand underneath it… but because it has history. It is one of the Druidic sacred woods… perhaps even the fabled Golden Bough that Aeneas had to pluck to visit the land of the dead. I’ve no doubt she would go off into loads of detail and speculation here, but it’s my post and its Christmas… so you can look it all up here if you are interested.
Anyway, she can call that romantic if she likes, but I’m not so sure it is where I would like to spend the holly-days! No, she said, Romance is different from romance… Well, if she isoing to get started on semantics, she can just go get another mince pie while I share something really romantic instead, from a friend of mine, Anne Copeland…
The Christmas Trees
by Anne Copeland
There they lay, forlorn and drying out in the parking lot.
There were two of them, and it nearly made me cry to see them.
These two pine trees had given up their lives to be Christmas trees.
And yet here they lay, and it was clear no one had taken them home.
Into the store I literally ran,
My heart pounding, I asked
“What is the price of those two Christmas trees?”
The man looked at me as he said
“Oh, they are leftovers. You can have them.”
I ran back to them, stopping
To let them know
They were going home with me.
I managed to get the first one into the back
Of my old Honda Hatchback
But the second one was just too heavy.
I ran back into the store.
“Can you please help me?” I asked, hopefully.
Of course, the man said. No one else was there.
So the other tree joined its friend.
And toward home we headed.
The fragrance of the trees
Filled my heart.
I pulled and tugged and dragged
The first tree into the backyard
Where a nice bucket of water
But the second one was not coming easily.
After applying all my strength,
It was still in the back of the car.
I ran to get the maintenance man, Richard.
Without laughing at me
For my request
He followed me back
And with strong arms
Pulled out the second tree
And I helped him get it into the water.
I was touched
That this big man did not
Laugh at me
Or the idea that these trees
Gave their lives
To be Christmas trees.
We have been together
Almost five years now.
The trees lived through the holidays.
We gave them the gift of life.
And we gave each other
The gift of Love.
About the author
I am a young-minded senior mentor, advocate, and activist for physically, developmentally, and emotionally physically challenged adults and children. Sometime in the late 60’s, my younger and only sibling came home from Vietnam 100% disabled, and it gave me the heart to do this work, which I have been doing ever since.
I am also an activist for anti-bullying of any age or race of person. I pretty much say what I think and think what I say; no game playing or untruths here. I am the editor of a book filled with the writings of the lives of 23 physically challenged fiber artists, Artful Alchemy: Physically Challenged Fiber Artists Creating, and also Pumpkin, Pumpkin: Folklore, History, Planting Care, and Good Eating. The second book is in its 3rd Edition, and is currently being revamped to include a paperback. I have two children’s books awaiting illustrations and final formatting and editing, and I have a book on quilt history awaiting my time and attention when the others are completed.
I am a professional artist in mixed media, urban art, and fiber arts, and I have had my own businesses and careers most of my life.
Find and follow Anne
Physically Challenged Fiber Artists Creating
Edited by Anne Copeland
With the assistance of Barbara Williamson
Available via Amazon
The medieval practice of alchemy was concerned with trying to combine ordinary materials into something unique such as turning base metals into gold, finding a cure to end disease, and the path to prolonging life. It was practiced hand-in-hand with spiritual beliefs that it was possible to change that which was known. By the same token, artful alchemy is the process of spiritual discovery that enabled the artists in this book to transform their challenged lives, resulting in personal growth and international success in their art.
Most of these artists have their own businesses teaching, lecturing, designing patterns, writing books and creating and selling their unique art, leaving a rich legacy for upcoming artists and other creative people. All of them have been involved in international exhibits, winning major awards, and receiving written recognition. As you read through this highly inspirational book, we believe you will discover the possibilities available for your own life through the discovery of artful alchemy.
This book contains a collection of beautiful art, plus the personal stories of the 23 multi-talented contributors. The common thread through their lives is that each woman has overcome physical and other challenges to become a successful artist in the textile medium. Many of these women have websites and sell their work through the Internet sites, while others sell in galleries, exhibits, or through their teaching. Some create to speak to political and other social issues, while others use their quilts to educate the public about their physical challenges. If you have dreamed of expressing your own creativity, this book will provide the inspiration you need.
An Invitation from the Small Dog
If you would like to help Ani make her advent calendar this year, send your letters to Santa, festive memories, short stories, flash fiction or poems to the Small Dog. She will post them every day through December until Christmas…and there are still spaces left!
She would especially like to hear from her four-legged or feathered friends (she has a special place very close to her heart for turkeys)… but she says that two-legs are better than none, so she will accept submissions from humans too (and even no-legs if there is the odd literary snake out there…). To get in touch, please use the form on the contact page or email Ani at firstname.lastname@example.org