Dec. 25: Wish Book

for Sue and Donna
and our parents

Look what I found:
pages from our childhood
bible, the one that arrived
in fall and we pored over
for weeks, working (at least
in theory) on Christmas lists
that we’d present to parents
with our eternal hope—

pages selling trolls (not troll
dolls, as our parents called them—
to us they were real characters
to whom we gave names and
backstories).

And here are the Matchbox cars,
likewise with names and biographies,
the Kiddles, tiny dolls (OK, sure)
wearing tiny outfits. Remember
the girl with the guitar and mic
stand, her long blond hair swinging
behind her as she sang?

And one of us must have
requested a kids’ record player
because we certainly each
had one, which was how we
listened to our cousins’ 45s
they passed on to us—

the “Flying Purple People Eater”
debuted the year I was born—
graduating to Snoopy vs. the Red Baron
to Herman’s Hermits and the Beatles,
eventually to Barry Manilow
and John Denver.

I never got the kids’ typewriter
I requested, on which I might
have batted out any number
of stories and poems—though
my parents got me a dandy
Smith-Corona electric when I
graduated from high school.

But look, you guys, at what our
little hearts desired more than
a half century ago, what fed our
imaginations, what helped us
grow into women of substance
and character, what we wished for—
so much of it not from the Sears
Wish Book—

that we so blessedly were given.

(See many vintage catalogs)

About janishaag

Writer, writing coach, editor
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2 Responses to Dec. 25: Wish Book

  1. Janet Johnston says:

    Oh my gosh! I love this poem! Wonderful voice and details. My heart aches for a troll. I wish I had never given mine away. Thanks Jan!

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