The holidays can be difficult for those who have lost someone. I was fortunate that my hiatus from the celebration was brief. However, if you are spending a lonely holiday, please take heart. Grief never disappears; but, if you seek to live joyously, it does fade into the background. You get to choose. Take your time; but, always know that you get to choose.

He sat at the table,
grateful for another year;
but, the empty seats and quiet house
reminded him of Thanksgiving days gone by.
The turkey tasted the same.
The TV blared the same football sounds,
and the house,
though quiet,
was populated by tables and chairs
that had seen it all.
For a moment in time,
he was transported to a day
when the house was filled
with people
who now spent the day in other locations,
spread out among the only ones
who remembered her.
He looked at old photographs
of smiling people,
mouthing words of thanks
for another year,
and another meal,
and another prayer
for lonely fellow travelers
on this earthly marble.
Her photograph
surveyed the new proceedings
he hoped,
blessed his lonely heart.
He wanted to reach inside the picture frame
and drag her back
from wherever God had taken her.
He only whispered a silent prayer,
that his new tradition
would hold back the tears,
and that the ghosts of turkeys from the past
wouldn’t sit at every holiday table
until he was just a photograph. .rickcigar