We were about to decorate the Christmas
tree in the living room, blue
lights and tangled cords, when Jeff said
we beat the Dakota Access Pipeline.
We agreed this was reason to celebrate
then swept loose pines off the floor.
Paige hung the usual ornaments: red
orbs, angels. Sara served hot chocolate
with cocoa powder, skim milk, vanilla
extract– warm in the heat of our home,
far from Standing Rock. I thought of Sophie,
who built teepees in the cold to stand with
the Sioux– how they risked frost and flame
to stay alive, and many of them did. But
when Long called to catch up that day
we didn’t talk about it.
(originally published in Pomona Valley Review, Summer 2019)