It was a magically quiet, moonlit evening in the little village of Nob, where all the nobbies gathered to enjoy their most cherished Christmas tradition of remembering the gifts we give. It required such an evening with the moon at its pinnacle of brilliance. For it was only on such nights that the life drops of oil could be brought forth from an aged one’s brass vial as their life was celebrated in a wondrous miracle of visual retrospect.
On this night that honor fell upon Kiana, the sweet matriarch that lived in the little home by Lake Bobbin. All were hushed in anticipation as the first drop of oil was pulled from her vial and placed on the crystal window pane that faced the moon’s silver beams. As it always did under the soft glow of this moonlight, the oil began to glow brighter and brighter, soon enough casting across the window a full image of a moment in life.
Kiana was amazed to see herself placing a small box of freshly baked sweets on the door step of a young nobbie struggling so hard in his studies. All of the nobbies nodded their heads in understanding as they watched young Moni arrive home from school, finding her little gift, instantly lifting his spirit.
After that drop was shared another one was pulled forth and placed on the crystal pane. Again the moon’s light began to slowly illuminate another life gift. This time all watched as Kiana knelt in humble prayer, pleading not only for her loved ones but for all those who hurt others. From the back of the room came a sob as one old nob known for being rather crotchety listened as Kiana lovingly prayed even for him.
And so through the night it went as drop after drop was brought forth from Kiana’s brass vial of life. With hearts now filled to overflowing the nobbies openly wept as they watched and learned from this gentle life. They watched as kindnesses were given in response to meanness.
They watched as smiles were shared, embraces were frequent and sincere. They watched as Kiana gave gift after gift to all around her. Not gifts bought with money but gifts of encouragement, compassion, loyalty, friendship, kindness, charity, hope, faith, perseverance, courage, strength and countless others given through her example and her watchful, carefully tuned eye to the needs of others.
As it always did, the moon slid behind the distant hills, and the first rays of morning light signaled to all that this sacred night was over for another year. Each nobbie now humbly returned to their own home, infused with the glowing light from the life of another.
They pondered about their lives and what their own distant special Christmas night of remembering would be. What gifts could they give? What gifts were they already giving? They thought deeply about the gifts and kindnesses they could give this Christmas and throughout the coming year. And they smiled in anticipation. Merry Christmas.
Craig Lindquist is a local cabinet maker, writer and beloved Tutu Kane.