Christmas Eve
by Dom DiBernardi

My words are plain, but the times are complicated.
Such complications to keep them plain. Still they hang
In complicated patterns, lights made in China
Twinkling erratically. Outside the downpour drums.
It never felt like Christmas. In memory, feel.
The post-war forties float in the firmament: world,
World, world, fresh from brittle tissue after one year
In underdark. We always know where to find them.
Our blessings bristle, needles that prick and ooze and
Drop. The night so silent you can hear a page turn,
And, from the other room, voices of those absent.
People doze off in front of their video hearths—
Mother, father, sons—archaic, kitschy as eve,
The word. When one dies all the others keep burning.

Copyright 2021 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.