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Let the Magic Be

I am a woman who likes a stool for my feet. Stepping stones along a garden path, too. I want my dog nestled beside me on the screened porch, holding watch—trespassers beware! Which reminds me of Winnie-the-Pooh and “Trespassers Will” a remnant of a sign hanging in The Hundred Acre Woods. I always identified with this woods because my grandparents lived on a 100-acre farm. Plus, like Piglet who claimed the sign was his grandfather’s name (short for William), I made up shit when I didn’t know the answer (how do you think I became a writer?). Also like my bitty porcine friend, I have a tendency toward nervousness.

What does any of this have to do with Christmas? My love of Christmas was set in Jackson, Mississippi, when I was a little girl. There we had Piglet and Chilly Willy and Aslan and the whole family drifting off to sleep with records stacked ten deep on the record player. I know Christmas is Jesus’s birthday—my lovely sister has a birthday cake for Jesus every Christmas Day—but for me the joy of the season is the magic. When we believe wild and wonderful things. A big ol’ man can fit down a chimney. The Menorah candles never go out. The earth begins its long arc back to the sun. A savior is born in the hush of night.

To some, this is a frowned-upon view. But it’s a miracle unto itself that I can hold it. When I was three, my dad died violently on December 19. I could have shied away from the season forever. Instead, I chose the magic.

So many people don’t make it through Christmas, literally. None of us make it through life. While we are here, let us enjoy the wonder of it all. Set aside the harrumphing—Young lady, that is NOT why we have Christmas. This year, when so much violence and suffering roils the world, can we let the magic be?

Santa, Godzilla and a large red pig square off in the spirit of let the magic be.

Santa and Godzilla square off as the Christmas pig referees.

a Mississippi childhood, how to survive the Christmas season, let the magic be, the magic of christmas

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