It’s the first Friday of the month. You know what that means… it’s time for another installment of short fiction. (You can, at any time, find this work or any of the First Friday Fiction Features, by going to the My Work tab, clicking on Freebies, and selecting the story you wish to read.)
In the spirit of Christmas, I’m taking some liberties with a famous work of Mr. Clement Clark Moore. I’m sure you’ll recognize it. Happy Holidays, everyone.
Christmas Eve Perspective
Twas the night before Christmas, I was the only one up.
The only thing keeping me going was the caffeine in my cup.
The last month had been spent in a blur of congestion.
And I sat wrapping gifts pondering one crucial question.
My kids had full bellies and had gone to bed sated.
And it was the time of night that I most hated.
My husband had had his fill of fine family dining.
And had done a little too much of “fine family wining.”
He’d just “rested his eyes” and was now snoring.
A trait I didn’t find very adoring.
So I was wrapping all the presents and guzzling my joe,
When I saw something moving outside in the snow.
I stepped onto the porch for a better view.
The starry sky was clear, but a blustery wind blew.
I turned from the chill, then I looked back.
I swear it was Santa, complete with sleigh and sack.
I counted eight reindeer hitched to his sleigh.
And wondered who would believe my story when I told it the next day.
Without my phone, I’d have no photographic proof,
I thought maybe I could show someone the prints of a hoof.
I stood there and watched them, I’m not sure how long.
Santa was singing his deer a beautiful song.
I thought it must be how he gets them to fly in the air;
It’s not quite a carol, not quite a prayer.
But he sang his song, and he shook the reins,
And off they went by the tune of his baritone strains.
The stars twinkled, the snowflakes swirled;
Santa was gone, bringing joy to the world.
I turned to go back inside, resigned to do my work;
I had been acting like a complete and total jerk.
So what if I was the only one doing the wrapping?
Who cares if I would rather be in my warm bed napping?
These moments are fleeting. They come and go fast.
There’s no way in the world we can make them last.
The kids won’t know, nor will they care,
Who baked or shopped or wrapped, I swear!
I needed to stop asking why I was always stuck.
I needed to stop asking why I had such rotten luck.
I opened the door and dropped my jaw, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
What I saw inside the room was a Christmas Eve surprise!
Every gift was wrapped and tagged and placed under the tree.
And all the paper, bows, and tags were put away for me.
My husband slept soundly again; I woke him with a kiss.
“Thanks,” I said, and gestured, “for handling all this.”
He said, “I wish I could take credit, but it wasn’t me.”
And we heard sleigh bells ringing outside beyond the holly tree.
“You don’t think…” I whispered, stunned. “I mean—”
“Why not?” he said. “It wouldn’t be the first magical thing we’ve seen.”
He wrapped me in his arms, I snuggled against him tight.
“Merry Christmas.” He pulled me toward the stairs. “It’s going to be a good night.”