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Number 62 In Blue

The candle sputtered
Then guttered out
The wick a speck in the wax
The old poet looked
And suffered to stand up
The last present wrapped was Jack’s

A fresh Christmas candle
Striped Santa red and holly green
With its new flame warmed the room
Placing presents about
A tree to shame Charlie Brown
The shards of wrapping left with the broom

The cat’s tail flicked serene
The poet reached for his quill
As words soft filled a new page
A chance Winter memory
Spurred the poet on
Thoughts neither steep nor very sage

She bought him skis for a gift
Though “cross” country would mean something else
Tears of laughter with every tumble and spill
He wondered where she was now
A score of years have long passed
When meeting on Concourse B was such the piquant thrill

Chinese Five Spices
Floated upon the solemn merlot
The poet paused to let the tightness pass
Tomorrow the two-state drive
Back to his beloved Crescent City
Though this year without his own wee lass

Daughter would be skiing
Off out with her Mother and half family
Cross country over in the mountain West
He’d be with swiftly aging brother
And a Christmas with the family Creole
But things always work out for the best

A meow and a sigh
The poet let Jack out the door
A cat in search of secret nocturnal meetings
The candle blew out neat
The cold front had as promised arrived
As the rain pelted out its Season’s Greetings

Waxing and waning here came Christmas Number Sixty-two
But he yet looked ahead brightly through this Yuletide in Blue


The Unforgiveable Crime?

Oh, the horrid errors of Yule
We have all committed:
Mixed up colors to patterns;
Ribbons tied so misfitted.

Gave ‘em the wrong present
Or left on the price tag;
Switched the main big one
With the present that’s a gag!

Quick wrap on Christmas morning—
Oh, what an unsightly cut.
The paper just won’t fold
And I cannot get the box to shut!

Such perils of childhood presenting
On every December 25th;
THEN: Missing one’s front teeth
So every time it’s Saint Nicholith!

Then the unforgiveable crime,
Even if only a kid—
Someone (?) had somehow discovered
Where all the Christmas presents were hid!

So I became a Santa agnostic,
But it was really alright:
And I still get that soul-tug
Whenever we sing “Silent Night.”

And now I have my own child
The best present I ever had!
And should she find where I hid those gifts—
Well, ya know, it just won’t be all that bad!

“Jingle bells, jingle bells…”

Trust, But Verify

Been here for hours and hours
Think I’m turning blue
But I gotta see, I gotta know
I have to see if it’s true
Staring at the fireplace
Looking for any sign
It’s late late Christmas Eve
But Daddy says it’s fine
Even if I wait all night
For hooves on our roof
But that won’t be even enough
I will need some real proof
Sandman do your worse
But *yawn* you won’ get me
As I gaze at the pretty lights
A-twinkling on our tree

Wait! What was that?!
A noise over by the chimney!
No, it’s just that old fat Tom Cat
Playing with tinsel on a whimsy
But *yawn* I feel so very warm
*Yawn* but can’t go to…bed
*Yawn* Sally Jane says he’s not real
That it’s all made up in my…head…

Father picked up his Little Lilly
And took her at last to her own warm bed
Missing some soot that trickled down
From the jolly old man who’d just got off his sled

–A reprise from couple years ago:
Merry Christmas and
Happy New Year!