An Ekphrasis on Inappropriate Christmas Cards


A line of smoke snakes from the chimney, like a row of out-of-season Santas signing on. Days are hard here, nights are harder, and the point at which one snaps from another is hardest of all. We scrape at the ground like peasants in a prestige manuscript, reprinted on a greeting card by another picture editor who doesn’t know shit. Night with her Train of Stars, anyone? Hush, my dear ones, my dead ones, and turn back the page. There’s a white castle on a green hill, a blue sky full of scared birds and smoke, and a half-acre of stirred dust. Leaves flutter and fall. Hunters in the Show, perhaps? Memory returns like a collapsing planet in long, quiet scenes. Hush, my dear one, my dead one, and turn back the page. Days are endless here, concurrent with endless night, and the point at which they join is an invisible scar. Chimneys smoke like stickmen coughing into unseasonable snow The Pond, then? We scrape the ground amongst the snakes. Hush, my dear ones, my dead ones. Frost forms on unforgiving benches.





Oz Hardwick
Photo Nick Victor


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