In snowy Massachusetts. Hot chocolate. Icy bare trees. Stacks of books from the library. Hanukah candles glowing in the gloaming. Colored pencil drawings. Charlie Brown's Christmas. Early bedtimes. "Angels from the Realms of Glory" and covers of Hillary/Kate McGinnon's cover of Leonard Cohen on out-of-tune piano in the basement. The piano I spent hours and hours and weeks and years of my life playing songs from Les Mis and Miss Saigon and REM and 10,000 Maniacs on. Candy canes in a little jar. My old wind-up rocking horse toy playing "Toyland." Wally making up endless stories with his new story cubes. Petra putting together a puzzle photo of my Aunt and Uncle's wedding picture, a favor from the anniversary party I never made it down to this October because of the hurricane that closed off the North Carolina shore, six years after the cousin's October wedding I never made it down to because of a hurricane that messed up all the flights in the Northeast. The notes of the windup toy spaced further and further apart as the toy slows down. Wally worried last night about dying, through tears asking why everyone has to die. Petra first thing this morning, before even really awake, stretching her arms above her head with eyes still shut, "See Wally, I told you you wouldn't die."
Just a note here or there now of the music from the wind-up toy, with the broken wooden train and the missing teddy bear that fell off somewhere, who knows how many years ago. "Little girl and boy land. When you dwell within it, you are ever happy." Notes hanging in the air, as the clear bright sun streams in.