December 21, 2021

Mistletoe Sprig, By Kim Malinowski

Hanging as if still on my Elm branch, tied with red ribbons and brass bell, I held vigil over giggling lovers meeting as if on accident and falling back in love for another year under my spell. I waited for two prone figures on either side of the hall. The man, broad shouldered, strong, stared at the shrinking woman. When her eyes raised and met his, both darted their chins down pretending the floor was more interesting than each other’s dimples. I was compelled by their awkwardness, their timidness, to gift them my magic. With a gust of wind from the door, I flung myself between them. The man instinctively jumped up to grab me and the woman leaned quickly to do the same. I felt both sets of fingers tugging at my leaves. My magic was already caressing them. The woman let go, sagging, thinking her chance to find love was gone. I watched the man deliberate as he held me in his palm, then finding the courage he needed in my leaves, he slid me gently into her hair, tucking me behind her ear. She blinked wide-eyed, overcome by my soft magic. Her chestnut hair and my green leaves and white berries reflected in his eyes. Entranced, he bent down, no longer towering over her, but leaning in closer. Eyes to eyes. Lips bumping lips. He clasped her, and I saw his shoulders gradually relax. They must have tasted honey in my magic because they never parted. Exchanging me back and forth between them, I found myself tucked in high and then lower crushed to his chest. Their lips brushed even as they danced—after all, it is bad luck for a woman not to kiss under the mistletoe and for the man not to ask her.


Lissa Sloan said...


Unknown said...

So many lovely moments tucked in here.