The First Day of Christmas

by MJ Logan
December 13, 2012


Image of a partridge."On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a partridge in a pear tree."


Have you ever wondered what a partridge is? It's a bird, smaller than a pheasant and bigger than a pigeon and certainly a whole lot tastier than squab. The baffling part is, why on earth would you deliver it in a pear tree? And since you get one on each day of Christmas, you'll have twelve birds (enough for Christmas dinner, I'm sure) and twelve trees (that's enough to count as an orchard) by the time December 25th rolls around.


 

Image of brains molded out of green and red jello.I often refer to "my muse" or "the muse." Henceforth, I will just refer to "Muse" as if it were another person. Muse exists in my head, almost like a person and without it, my writing would be non-existent at worst, or dull and boring at best.

Often, I will see something unexpected and Muse paints images in my brain to make up a mini-story. Not quite flash fiction in most cases, but something to go with the images I am observing. Usually it happens in the space of a few seconds, but sometimes it takes place over a longer period of time.

And sometimes, if conditions are right, Muse writes without painting pictures or images. Recently, I was visiting "Writing With Both Sides of My Brain," one of my favorite blogs and written by Angela Masters Young. Angela spends a lot of time musing over


Images of Eastern Bluebirds on dead tree branches.Once upon a lifetime ago I was a remodeling contractor. I built all sorts of things for people and redid their kitchens and bathrooms, finished their basements and built decks around their swimming pools. And thus it was that, early one spring, I found myself finishing a basement for my brother.

The last part of that job was installing a maple window shelf along a knee wall that ran alongside the wall of windows in their walk-out basement. The shelf was made up of twelve-foot long boards and since I had just laid all new flooring in the basement, I was taking the trim-work outside to cut it. The door to the basement is a set of French doors and I opened both doors to facilitate my going in and out with the long pieces of maple.

My brother and his family live in the country on a beautiful piece of property. You see deer, ducks, geese and many songbirds. During the previous two weeks, I had seen a flock of turkeys saunter by, a big tom herding his hens along and keeping track of them. His tail was fully displayed in the annual rituals of spring.