Friday, December 24, 2010

The Night Before Christmas (A True Story)

This is my version of Clement C. Moore's "The Night Before Christmas".

'Twas the night before Christmas
when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, except for a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.

My child wasn't nestled all snug in his bed,
Television was on, Dino Dan danced in his head.
And I in my kerchief, my husband in his cap,
Made room in our tummies for an apres dinner snack,

When out in the hall there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter.
Away to the hall I flew like a flash,
Tore open the baby gate and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the old fallen snow,
Gave the luster of midday to objects below,
When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature Peromyscus so tiny and dear,
With an orange old cat so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment he had caught St. Mick.

More rapid than eagles my little son came,
And he whistled and shouted and called them by name,
"Now, Phineas! Now, Patty! Now, Daddy and Mom!
The mouse is loose! He's at the top of the wall!"
Now dash away, cats, dash away all!

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the housetop the dwellers we flew,
With a shoe box, gloves, and St. Mickey Mouse, too.

And then in a twinkling I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of more mice on the roof.
As I climbed up the chair and was turning around,
Down into the shoebox St. Mickey came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot,
And his coat was all tarnished with dust and with dirt.
A bunch of wet marks the cat left on his back,
And he looked scared like burglar caught opening his pack.

His eyes, how they twinkled! His whiskers, how merry!
His cheek pouches were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the fur on his belly was as white as the snow.

The stump of a seed he held tight in his teeth,
And his ears encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a pointy face and a little round belly
That shook when he trembled like a bowl full of jelly.

My husband spoke not a word but went straight to his work,
And put on his coat, then turned with a jerk,
And laying a finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, the back door he chose.

He sprang to the shed, to the mouse gave a whistle,
And away the mouse flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim as he scurried out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"