Christmas comes to our neighborhood on the heels of Thanksgiving. As if by prearranged choreography, the neighbors spill out from their closed doors to climb ladders and decorate their houses and front yards. Music blares from boomboxes, gear and paraphernalia is strewn over front lawns. Some are in shorts and T-shirts. Others are in overalls and tool belts. With a focused faces they unpack last year’s decorations.
first weekend in December—
a climbing bougainvillea
flashes on and off
Not to be outdone, my children take inventory of everyone’s designs and get busy creating their own. They gather their friends around them and make plans for this year’s masterpiece.
up and down the driveway—
icicle lights drip
from the bushes
One neighbor in particular is the master of Christmas art displays. Every year we wait to see what new creation he will unveil. Soon, as if by magic, the front of his house is ablaze with flashing stars, twinkling trees and flying reindeer.
December is the month when we come home to everyone’s artistry. Walking the neighborhood after dinner allows us to appreciate the designs even more so. The nights are cold, the smell of wood smoke is in the air. Occasionally a dog barks as we go by.
from bare branches