Going After Mistletoe


Nana was there for the birth
so when her child could drive again
we went to cut the mistletoe.
They found the grove across a field
that reached out towards the river;
one tree held the treasure.
Mistletoe, green and fat with sticky pearls,
glittered towards the top.
Our mother handed back the keys to
a car the other couldn’t drive
and slid the pen knife in her pocket.
Three weeks old, my sister slept as
One woman scaled the tree.
She freed the bundle from its perch,
and made a sling out of her jacket.
She dropped it straight, then
found the branches down.
Nana finally asked, “And if you’d fallen?”
Invaded doves sent out their call,
and I thought ghosts were waking.
I cried, and hid behind the car door.
Our mother said to us all, “I never fall.
There’s nothing here to hurt you.”

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