Monthly Archives: December 2022

A Slice of Inspiration

Part of Slice of Life Challenge at Two Writing Teachers. Join us!

A second grader took a break from working on his Top Ten Memories in writing the other day. He walked over to me to tell me about the time his dog ate chocolate with raisins. His eyes like saucers as he was telling me this important story. I shook my head with concern – scrunching my face with worry.

“She’s still alive though,” he reassured me.


I asked him how his writing was going – seeing he only had a handful of memories written so far.

He smiled wide.

“I have a few written down. Now, all I gotta do, is —finish!” He said, walking back to his notebook that was waiting for him on the rug.

I’ve decided that is my new writing slogan: Now, all I gotta do, is —finish!

The slice I hadn’t started? Now, all I gotta do is finish.
The sample writing I have almost ready to send out? Now, all I gotta do is finish.
My book, started in small pieces? Now, all I gotta do is finish.

Actually, this slogan can work for all of life, I think.

The present wrapping that I haven’t started? Now, all I gotta do is finish.
My laundry sitting in the washer for the past couple hours? Now, all I gotta do is finish.
In the beginning stages of healing from betrayal? Now, all I gotta do is finish.

Thanks for the inspiration, kid.

Now, all I gotta do is finish.

Christmas Trees and Heartbreak

Part of Slice of Life Challenge at Two Writing Teachers. Join us!

A Christmas tree is not just
a Christmas tree
the Christmas trees

It’s my childhood trees —
A blur of colored lights
favorite ornaments that spark imagination

It’s that one time my parents got
a short tree
a short tree!
and put it on a table

A Christmas tree is my grandma’s trees
always in the same corner of her big house
wrapped with big lights
as we all gathered
well before we all

It’s my dance class trees-
full of magical ornaments
We’d take turns
dance up to the tree,
choose an ornament to dance as
the ballerina was easy,
but have you ever danced
like a candy cane would dance?
those ornaments, that tree, that studio, that teacher —
those memories live in a tainted haze now
this tends to happen
when 35 years later your dance teacher’s daughter has an affair with your husband
I do love the memory of that last dance
class before Christmas

It’s been awhile since I’ve
as an ornament – but
I’ve unpacked them a lot
in a flood of memories
Mostly good —

Last year I packed away the 2 snow people in a hot cocoa packet from the year I was married
But I still thought about it when we decorated this year

make the tree
Like clothes make the man
Lights and memories

A Christmas tree is
little kids
clip, clip, clipping the tree wrapping off
branches falling
the brittle Christmas tree
poking us as we spun lights off
and needles covered our 100 year-old wood floors
bare branches by the curb
shoving a tree out the window
Well past January
My youngest sobbing, screaming,
“I want Christmas! It’s not over!”

My tree is artificial now
pieces snapped together by teenagers
The bottom lights broken
by the new kitten
But it shines
all the trees

I sit by the tree
in the soft glow of
all the Christmas trees,
lights, ornaments, memories
and the thoughts of heartbreak too