Tradition is the Illusion of Permanence

October 19, 2010
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The house is silent. No playing children, no christmas music; only the reminder of the fallen’s absense. Beverly, with a delicate, aging hand, holds strings of garland between her fingers. Plastic beads slither from a box and onto the floor. An unfinished Christmas tree stands naked in the corner.

The mantle holds her only company; a motionless, inattentive audience. Wisps of grey hair fall to cover her eyes, shielding tears from the photos; away from the young, beautiful girl with a toddler cradled in her arms and the sturdy young man behind her. These tears are hidden from her husband, a handsome man with his arms around his wife’s waist.

Beverly walks gracefully to the old record player. Music plays, and the corners of her mouth turn up. She sips on a glass of eggnog, and in the background of the music, the television set plays Christmas specials. And as she places the first thread of garland on the tree, her head turns back to her family.

“For you,” she whispers. And so the traditions continue.





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