"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Thursday, December 20, 2012

FIG TREE DISPLACED FROM THE HOLY LAND

A fig tree displaced from the Holy Land.
A nativity scene blown into the ditch.
A missing arm and an ass.
The end, she says, is near.

So bequeath me a blanket,
the one you just took off your bed.
That's all I want. And the candle with no wick
in the bottom of the box of ornaments,
like a life well lived and now tucking itself in.

She says she wants to give them to a thrift shop.
That’s like pictures of other people’s ancestors
stacked in dusty corners.
Nobody wants that stuff.
Who are they without their frames?

The sun drops to a lower arc in the sky,
and the fig tree on my back porch is dying
without the heat of the Holy Land.
I throw a blanket over it at night
and take it back off in the morning,
thinking by some miracle it will survive.

But it’s out of place and this isn’t the Holy Land.
We pass freely between townships and counties.
We wear what we want and go to church if we want.
And holy is clean ground—
the No Toxic Spraying signs
we store in the milkhouse for winter.

I string lights on the dying fig
but miniature lights don’t conduct warmth,
they only give off light.
It isn’t enough.

6 comments:

Anthony Duce said...

Wonderful. very much enjoyed...

Yvonne Osborne said...

Hi Tony,
Thank you so much.

G-Man said...

You ROCK the Mitten Mama!!
Have a Kick Ass Week-End .
Merry Christmas....G

Yvonne Osborne said...

Thanks G. And Merry Christmas to you.

Deborah said...

Intriguing and lovely. Merry Christmas, Yvonne!

Yvonne Osborne said...

Deborah,
Thank you. Happy New Year.