“I’m Trying to Find a Poem About Christmas That I Actually Like” by Brittney Corrigan

Brittney Corrigan


but they are mostly dated and filled
with words like thine and o’er and behold.

And yes, I do want something about the snow,
and the light as it falls on the snow,

but I could do without the angels today,
or anything unreachable that’s supposed to be

looking out for us down here. And yes, I do
want something about the trees, both outside

and inside, and about the singing, and about
the laying out of the table, or the looping

of ribbons, or the tucking in of children. But
I’m wishing we could leave God out of it.

It’s not God’s job to hang out with us right now
and fix things. I want something that uses

filling stockings as a metaphor for choosing
small kindnesses to tuck into each person’s

heart. Something that reminds us that the horse
knows the way, so if we could just find that horse

and hold on, we’ll come out of all this OK.
Something that, yes, is filled with the glistening

and the sparkling and all things aglow, because
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly

When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky—
Yes, that’s the kind of thing I want, all of us

outrunning the storm that’s pushing us out of the year,
and we’re climbing right over the tired pile of reindeer

to what’s really up there for us. The snow coming
down. The way we shape it with our hands and throw.

from Poets Respond
December 24, 2017


Brittney Corrigan: “This poem came out of reflecting back on all the difficult and hateful and tragic things that have happened in 2017, though the one news story that really spurred on the writing of the poem was the passage of the new tax bill. With Christmas approaching, I was struggling to find the holiday spirit among all the rubble. This poem is a response to that hopeless/hopeful feeling many of us are currently experiencing.” (web)

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