That orange sweater

Photo by Nico Mksmc on Unsplash

Bright   bold   demanding 
it repels me
I want to remain unseen      an observer
every year painting each layer of the scene 
so that nothing is forgotten 

Grandma sitting on the armchair      rearranging 
the little sweets on the coffee table
Dora, Esther by her side     loudly 
exclaiming about this and that
In the men’s corner – whiskey, cigars – my uncle 
telling a story with his whole body   Nikos laughing     smiling at 

My mum     surrounded by kids     grandkids 
and any other child that is around that day
Presents neatly pilled in corners
My aunt turning up the music    Christmas songs 
(but we are Jews, why do we even celebrate Christmas?)
singing and dancing, as if we are in the biggest, liveliest party 

Over by the Christmas tree my cousin and sister
in matching hats taking photos
calling my brother over, who looks at them skeptically 
and eventually obliges
one of the little dogs wrestling with 
an ornament that fell off the highest branch

That orange sweater
bright      bold     demanding to be seen
I never did give it away 
I couldn’t resist the smell of cinnamon and chestnuts 

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