It’s January, and the dead bodies are piling up.
The murders began at the end of November and continued through December.
Some of the murders were done by hired killers out in the countryside. Others were committed by dedicated dads and moms in the suburbs to please their offspring. Still others were carried out by well intentioned young men from the city to impress their girlfriend or new bride.
These brutalities were accomplished with chainsaws, axes, hatchets, or other sharp-edged implements — in broad daylight!
No one reported hearing any screams. When interviewed, folks reported the victim was very quiet, never caused any trouble, and kept to themselves. Then, the witness would slam their door shut to prevent reporters from peering into their own homes.
Why? What were they hiding? Did they commit one of these atrocities themselves? Was there a path of evidence strewn across their living room floor leading to the front door? And what was that scattering of brownish-green specks trailing to the curb?
Yes. Christmas is over, and the dead bodies of blue spruce, balsam pine, and every species of fir tree are piling up outside of homes across America.
We chop them down. Drag them in. Argue over the best side to face ‘out’ avoiding the obvious hole Mother Nature laughingly placed in the most inconvenient spot. Adorn them with ornaments that refuse to hang straight and lights that never fail to blink out in one section just when we think we’re all done. Water them when we manage to remember. Declare them to be the most beautiful Christmas tree we’ve ever had. Demand family and friends pose in front of them for photos. Become one with our vacuum cleaner for the duration of the holidays.
Then . . . when the New Year celebrations end, we strip our victims of their colorful decorations, curse their falling needles poking up through our carpets, and drag them to the curb. No remorse. No fond farewell. No looking back. Good riddance.
A simple promise passing our lips: “No live tree ever again.”
Until next year comes, and the killing begins again.