THE CHRISTMAS BUSH

We didn't have much money,
so the boys went to the woods,
and it seemed their Christmas spirit
made up for worldly goods.

With saw in hand they hurried
to a place that they had found.
They spied a tree humongous;
Steve said, "Let's cut it down."

Their fervor was undaunted
when they dragged it to the truck,
'cause the truck bed was too little;
"We'll trim the tree," said Chuck.

So with youth's determination
they sawed the bottom off,
then they laid it in the truck bed
with the tree top hanging off.

I was standing in the doorway
when they pulled up in the drive,
and I couldn't help but chuckle,
thinking goodness sakes alive.

'Cause the tree that they had chosen
was too tall to fit the den.
Steve said, "We'll do some whacking,
and then we'll get it in."

They axed it near its summit
and hauled it through the door,
anticipation mounting,
their masterpiece upon the floor.

I'll ne'er forget that Christmas,
and looking back I see,
that tree so crudely mangled
was as perfect as could be.

It's not always skillful crafting
that sets a thing apart,
and loving eyes see beauty
when looking from the heart.

Copyright 1998 Ruth Gillis

Previously published in Poet's Review
December 1998

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