Lights Left On
We are the ones with our holiday lights still on. The slim porch dangling beneath two large and dripping strings of lights, one white and simple, and one all the bright colors still there from Christmas. On the little ledge our foot tall tree fell over in a storm. We never took it out to the dumpster, just out to the patio.
Now the weather's warming up and I walk into the house, look up, and wonder what this says about us. Too busy to make house look nice? Too concerned with what's inside to be aware? Too much hopefullness enjoying the holiday light?
Of course my mind wants to go to the last one. We both work long hours and long weekends, pursuing our dreams to any extent and can't the tiny speckled light bottled up for a view let us have that whimsicle feeling again? It surely get's lost in the grind.
When I wanted the tree to be thrown out I characterized it. I wrote a little note from him:
"Please take me to tree heaven now. I am ready."
Marc thought it was strange the writer would characterize our dying little tree. But he smiled, tucked it outside to bring it to the dumpster. Now it lies on its side barely any branches, a body weeping in the spring rain.
It is this that is more fascinating to me than the lights. We almost didn't get one and I think back to that day. We were too busy, the apartment too small for a real tree. Marc immediately lost interest. He only had real trees growing up and that felt more like a real Christmas to him.
I snuck out just two weeks before the holiday, maybe even closer, and went to the market. I walked by stacks of them and this little guy stuck out before left stalling to his death. He was once on display. He was once let inside.
I think of myself how I am good at the big ideas, good at moving those big ideas forward. I am not so good at maintenance, the little tasks to be left at the end, to be buried with the past.
To be fair, the snow has just stopped with the weather lurching forward now, and I will write a new voice for the lights streaming outside: "The holidays end, then let us off again."