A New Year
It’s been 3 extraordinary years
and my Christmas “wall-tree” still hangs
string-tied branches dangle
in the classic shape
tiny fairy lights glowing all around
new ones crowd in each year
after January sales
a delicate glass cardinal, a hand-carved polar bear
that begin to gather their own dust layers
in wispy spider webs.
I said I would finally take it down in 2022
but keep finding reasons to do something else.
On our neighborhood social media
a person scolded
“please take down your lights!”
I wondered at their need to say this.
Did they feel that somebody had to?
Is it that same perfectionism that creates
such tightly manicured lawns
slipping past what really matters
and some unbearable fixation
unable to ignore
the camouflaged string of unlit pearls
lining their neighbor’s rooftop?