He kissed me under the
Not a great one, considering
His reputation as an earthy cowboy,
But then again, he was old-fashioned
And my family was looking on.

A room full of trees, and trains, bows,
And colored balls, lights flickering in time with
Noel after Noel.

Then the snow began, predicted to fall gently
on our quaint little
Storybook town,
It slammed us,
In danger of caving in the roof.

Pelting buildings,
Overturning cars,
Breaking shovels, the old-fashion forged-steel kind.
Plastic didn’t have a chance.
Storm after storm,
Days passed.

No contact with the world we knew.
Only a holiday barely lived with the
Help of a generator.

Melting of snow to water,
Keeps us alive.

Food runs short, emergency supplies
In jeopardy.
The realization strikes.
Not equipped for this
Even with survival books and gear.

This might have been our last kiss,
Last carol, last ribboned gifts.

All of us, a Family,
In a cabined blizzard.
We will die.

Our final prayers go up,
Simplest of requests.
“Make our last the best.”

The youngest, a boy, little one,
Says the “Amen.”

Then, without fanfare
the door springs open.
Rays of sun peel off
The crystalline hoar.

A voice, a hero’s timbre,
“Everyone okay in here?
Quite a storm, hey, even
For up North.”

tears of joy in our throats
We brewed the coffee,
Sliced the hard, crossed-bun,
smiled the sunshine in,

And kissed, again, under the mistletoe.

Charlene James-Duguid
Amissville, Virginia
December, 2017