'Tis the season to be hospitable...
She smiled as she dusted
the ceramic crèche
on the old oak credenza,
sang as she swept the kitchen floor,
even Lysoled the bathroom bowl
Humming a Yuletide carol, the woman
rolled pastry into a thin rectangle
and cut cookies into shapes
of stars and angels and lambs.
Spontaneous praise proceeded from her lips
as she stuffed the twenty pound turkey,
trussed it tidily,
rubbed it with butter and sage
and lifted it into the moderate oven.
She dressed the table with china and silver,
the slightly yellowed table linen
stored in her mother’s cedar chest,
and a silvery bowl of pink poinsettias
bought at the flower sale at church.
Her feet ached, but her eyes sparkled.
This was among life’s highest joys:
Her adult children would soon be at the door
bringing presents, hugs and laughter
and she would get to serve them Christmas dinner.