Ghost of Christmas Present(S)



I haven’t liked Christmas shopping since I worked in a bookstore at a Mall over 20 years ago.

Against a backdrop of giant Christmas Trees and canned Christmas music I saw humanity at it’s worst.

People demanded I fire employees who were not able to find them the books they wanted. I had people throw Christmas cards down on the counter and tell me how to fill them out. I saw people screaming at their kids, each other I saw a lot of people on the verge of tears.

All in the quest for  ‘ a gift ‘.


One year I saw a kid ( he was about ten years old )  look up at his Mom and he said, ” Just get me gift cards. You always buy the wrong things and you buy crappy presents.”

She said, ” I try.”

” To buy crappy presents?”

The woman shook her head and was trying to ignore him and when he saw he didn’t have her attention he said, ” Dad said all he wants are gift cards too. He says you always buy him stuff he doesn’t want.”

The woman set her purse on the counter. ” I’d like to get a gift certificate.”

” I hope you’re not getting that for me or Dad. We don’t like this bookstore.”


I went home that night and looked at our Christmas tree and then I reached down, yanked out the plug and  the tree went dark.

I felt a lot better.




So for me the challenge is buying presents for anyone at all.

After seeing a random collection of people I began to wonder if the people who gave me gifts felt the same way as the people I saw at the Mall when they bought it.

I’d watch my  family open things I gave them and I’d watch every muscle in their face to see if I could tell what they really thought of my present to them.

I couldn’t tell.


Last year this friend off mine ambushed me. She said she wanted to go for hot chocolate and pie and on the way there she said she had to run into the mall. Not my favorite place during the holidays. Then she decided to take a spin through the neighborhood so we could see the lights and decorations – last years thing was giant gift packages and inflatable snow globes. Seriously, it was a tribute to shopping and it really did freak me out

All of those elves and snowmen holding giant gift wrapped packages with maniacal smiles on their faces, ” Here you go give them this…they’ll love it, they’ll love you. bwahahahaaaa!”

I ignored Christmas for the next few weeks.


This year I decided to focus on things like Christmas music and stories and writing- I still can’t bring myself to do the commercial thing with much enthusiasm. I wish I could. I suppose it could be an adventure.  So, just when I think I’m ready to jump into the pool and go for it, I see that woman with the rotting corpse of the Holiday Spirit in her eyes and her obnoxious kid, ” You buy crappy presents. ”

I hope Christmas is more then that.

It just has to be.


Inspired  Random Views Prompt:


Millions of Burned Out Stars




I reached down to the Earth

and I lifted you up with my hands

you were cold, I was warm, I wanted to make you dance


So unfair you were scattered and broken

like millions 0f burned out stars

I cradled you gently I formed you carefully, I gave you my lonely heart


When I was done I fell to my knees

I looked up at you from the ground

I reached up, I touched your arm and a voice from behind me said,


” Nice snowman lady but what’s that red thing on it’s chest?”


Daily Post Prompt: Construct

This Isn’t Your Grandma’s Christmas Movie

In the strictest sense, this isn’t a holiday movie.

However, it is the season for Ghost Stories.

Stay with me here and I’ll explain.

I am intrigued by the idea for this movie because it’s exactly like the story I would reach for if I wanted to read something chilling on a night dusted with frost and snow and things that go bump in the night.

I know, this isn’t a Christmas Story, but it is a scary story and I think I’ll be there in the theater with popcorn in hand to watch it.


When Snakes Dream


The snake did nest in her mouth

it’s poison at away at her skin

nothing covers her aged bones but lies and smoke and sin


The snake did nest in her mouth

it’s forked tongue pierced her brain

no thoughts live in her skull just stories of what had been


The snake did nest in her mouth

it slithered its way to her heart

she wants to love she wants to live but the snake has its own dreams now.


Discover Challenge: One, Two, Three