Saturday, January 8, 2011

Merry Christmas, Love Luco

My prison guard was taking down the Christmas tree and it reminded me of all that fascinates me about the holiday. Christmas is a wrench that tightens my heart so that it nearly explodes. Will I get catnip? Toys? Will my prison guard perhaps for one moment allow me the freedom of the Outside? Will I climb this Christmas tree and cause it to topple over in a riot of colored lights before she finishes taking it all down?

But please do not mistake my anticipation for happiness. Christmas fills me with ambivalence - it is an intricate and not inelegant lie. It's like this garland of gumdrops - lovely, but a choking hazard, maybe also poisonous.... Yes, this is the season when someone will offer to hold the door open for you, but what of the door-holder's secret heart? What of the environmental cost of those twinkling lights draped over every tree? And mark the smooth veneer of the holiday - run your palm along its surface and that surface will lift, revealing with devastating clarity the truth.

Christmas is about display of love, not love itself. We make the motions of giving, but expect more in return. This porcelain and Bisphenol A village represents our happiness; it glows in a transitory spray of glitter. We do not know each other, nor are we capable of understanding that we cannot know each other in any other than the most shallow of ways. 

And the clamor over religion? It is another way to fight, one more way to oppress, to divide ourselves into specific categories of people. "We are they who were born knowing what is right," is what each holds sacred. 

But at least it is beautiful.

Christmas is one lie we anticipate all year.

1 comment:

  1. "Christmas is one lie we anticipate all year." It's too bad you are so sad inside your heart and unable to feel the love that's all around you. I hope one day you can feel that and then realize the true meaning of Christmas - it's an abundance of giving (love, life, beautiful colors, smiling faces, songs, lots of food, and lots of laughter).