Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Christmas Tree (10/09/08)
TITLE: Scrub Pine
By Jess Godwin
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The seasons passed. Summer bathed the trees in sunshine and the little tree stretched toward the light, but never seemed to get much taller. The golden fall air danced through its branches. The leaves of the elegant crepe myrtles drifted to the ground. The air turned cooler. Frost silvered the ground.
One day, two people that lived nearby came and stood around the little tree. They carried bags and boxes, setting them down on the ground nearby. The littlest one giggled. “It’s a big tree! It’s taller than me!” The family wrapped the little tree in garlands of bright red cranberries and snowy popcorn. Then they hung pinecones slathered in peanut butter and rolled in birdseed. The little tree loved the attention.
“Daddy, Daddy! Now can I?” The littlest one tugged at her father’s coat sleeve and bounced on the balls of her feet. Her father lifted her up and she placed a bright red bow on top of the little tree. “This is a Christmas tree for the an’mals, right, Daddy? And that’s why it doesn‘t have no glass or twinkle lights. Or that silvery stuff mommy put on the one at home”
“That’s right, baby. This is just for the animals. And the frost will give it all the ‘silvery stuff‘ it needs” he answered with a laugh. “And now, we should go home. Mommy has hot cocoa waiting and our own popcorn.“ The pair left and the little tree wore its new decorations proudly.
Just a little while later, a few birds landed on the little tree and began to pick some of the bird seed off of the pine cones. A gentle eyed doe nibbled at the cranberries. A family of rabbits hopped around the foot of the tree, picking up the seeds and berries that dropped to the ground. The little Christmas tree was thrilled to have something to offer. It didn’t have soft pink blooms like the crepe myrtle. It didn’t stand tall and majestic, towering over the other trees like a king. It didn’t have tall, spindly limbs to wave in the air like the slender pines. But it had decorations that the woodland creatures could enjoy on days when foraging was too difficult.
It was still a scraggly little bush of a tree, barely four feet tall, but the little scrub pine stood a little taller, a little prouder, happy to be a Christmas Tree.
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