Westmont Magazine Ode to an Unlit Pickle Tree
Woe that I should ever see
A lonely, unlit pickle tree.
A pickle tree whose crown is pressed
Against the heavens' starry breast;
A pickle tree upon the lawn
Where students ramble and are gone;
A tree that may in winter wear
A train of lamps within her hair
While carols rise and voices glee.
Songs are sung by fools like me,
But only President Beebé
Can light an unlit pickle tree.
Like all public events during the fall semester, Westmont’s annual tree-lighting ceremony was cancelled. With all the unexpected costs of keeping the campus safe from COVID-19, the college skipped stringing festive Christmas lights this year.
Paul Willis has been a professor of English at Westmont since 1988. His most recent books are Little Rhymes for Lowly Plants and the YA novel All in a Garden Green. www.pauljwillis.com