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Christmas Eyes
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By Louis Gander
Other Poems by Louis Gander


My mama was a loving spouse who did her very best
to keep my father happy and she never did protest -
to what my father said and did to add to her abuse -
and all the things I saw him do. There wasn't an excuse.
My father was a spiteful man who argued quite a lot
and it had hurt my mama so that she became distraught..
I pulled weeds from her garden and I chopped a lot of wood
that heated up our cooking stove. I helped her all I could.
As we prepared for Christmas Day and all that was in store,
enjoyed, I did, those special times with mama even more.
Yes, more than any other month could ever even boast,
December was that special time that we enjoyed the most.

One cold December morning came when father went to find,
a full and perfect Norway Spruce. (I tagged along behind).
The woods were vast. There must have been a million evergreen
which held a billion snowflakes out in sparkling winter scene.
Reflective sunlight shimmered bright which made my eyelids squint
so I looked down and found that all my footsteps made a print -
in snow so fun to walk through as it crushed beneath my feet -
(although at times the drifts caused me to detour or retreat).
That made me pause and catch a glimpse of smoke from fireplace
meandering above our house so wanting to embrace -
a family fraught with nervous fears and silent times 'to boot' -
as father, with his ego big, had muffled mama mute.

But fragrance from the many pine had found my little nose -
and tiny snowflakes glistened while they settled on our clothes -
reminding me that all is well despite my parents quarrels
and I could choose a better life with character and morals -
to live a life, not crooked, as we trekked from place to place -
to find that perfect tree to decorate our living space.
We trampled each direction and at last he gave a sigh.
We finally found that perfect spruce - my father, saw and I.
The night was strangely silent as we sat around our tree
when mom's love and compassion had been proven true to me.
Out through the corner of my eye, I viewed dejected years -
and though she tried to hold them back, I saw those lonely tears.

Throughout that night the light escaped reflecting off the floor,
and whispered prayers were carried out from underneath her door...
But light no longer flickers from the candles flaming tips
and silenced are the verses that I heard from mama's lips.
I know that father long regrets his former wicked ways -
but through my tears, I won't forget those special Christmas days
with scenes of the Nativity and tree exactly right,
with memories of mama and the truth that came to light.
Yes, this was many years ago that father and I spied -
then cut that perfect Norway Spruce the day before she died.
I heard his weeping through the door - such deep, repentant cries -
but now he sees as mama did... through humble Christmas eyes.

©2012 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


Romans 10 (NASB)
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”
—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord,
and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness,
and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.
11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”
12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek;
for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him;
13 for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

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Submitted: Thursday, November 1, 2012

Last Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012

About the Poet
Born in Richland Center, Wisconsin in 1954. It's the poem's message that matters- not the poet.

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