Shuttered inside in the snow-ladden forest
I made a fire
Settled down with a book.
Two pages later
Distracted by crackling and flames
I put the book down
Reached for the TV remote.
That too, put down
There would only be people
Auguing, silliness, telling me what to do or buy
Instead, I looked around at what I had.
Aunt Martha’s old Scrabble game
Dad’s hole-in-one driver
Joanne’s chicken soup tureen
The DVD of Jennifer’s graduation
The photo of Ethan at three standing in my size twelve shoes
Mom’s plug-in Christmas light that bubbles
Grandma’s stained-glass lamp
Cousin Bob’s collection of Irish beer-bottle caps.
Seeing these and more
Souls, now memories, of days gone by
And those shaping days to come
I see. I am not alone. I stand in a forest of souls.
No longer lonely
I put on my heavy coat, wool hat and gloves
And breathe in the trees.