A Christmas Toast

I have a Christmas bauble with your name on it
but this year I did not have a tree.

Last year
grief was fresh, and small remembrances
were a communion of sorts. Remembering
brought you closer again
in short, sharp pangs.

An aching year has lain down between us, and now
remembering is a slow infirmity. I would
hang your bauble on a tree, but my heart is too heavy
to lift it by its slender string.

I reach for my glass, the wine drawing me
into the pools of Mnemosyne.
I swim with my eyes closed, arms outstretched.

To Christmas, my brother. Our family
is as it ever has been,
so near,
so far.

To Christmas.