Sunday, December 25, 2005

Feast Fit for a Mouse

"...We baked hooks into sugar cookies cut into the shape of stars and then frosted them yellow. We chose candy canes over foil tinsel and when it was done we stepped back and breathed in our Little House on the Prairie triumph. As did the mice. By the next morning the lower branches were stripped of snacks, and the day after that the tree was clean up to knee level. I dreamed of star-shaped cookies scampering across the living room as if propelled along on their own tiny feet. They rounded the corner into the laundry room and disappeared under the drier. Mouse H.Q. Mice shinnied up the trunk and took away the popcorn and the cranberries piece by piece, and though they could not lift the candy canes from their branches, they could stand on their back legs and nibble the lower ones until their collective mouse breath was pepperminty fresh. In the end, we stripped off what they left behind, the candy canes and bare strings and gnawed wire hooks, and had a naked tree that Christmas. We all thought it looked very natural."
From Christmas Past by Ann Patchett

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