Art Lee: A tale in rhyme from a past Christmas time (with apologies to Edgar Allen Poe)
Once upon a midnight dreary
As if someone were gently tapping
Tapping on our bedroom door.
“Twas the kids! and nothing more.
Said two small voices (there are no more)
“Whad-ja doin’ Dad upon the floor?”
Quoth their father, “Shut the door.”
Finally we finished wrapping
And settled back to do some mapping
Mapping plans on where to store
Store the presents from the corps.
We decided then upon the closet
As a good place to deposit
Deposit when they start to snore
Quoth their parents, “What a chore!”
“What a chore” repeated mother
Should we go to such a bother?
To tie so carefully, then see them destroyed
By four small hands, with gleeful joy.
See them broken, crushed and mangled
Jumped on, sat on, hit and jangled
And two days later, hear them say with
Passionate wailing, “We’ve nothing’ to play with!”
Quoth their mother, “They’ll keep us poor.”
Feeling we had done our best
We finally settled back to rest
To sit and ponder, think and sigh
At the many events of the year gone by:
Things like concerts, songs and choirs
Plus barbershop singing and picnic fires;
Things like painting and refinishing wood
Like clocks, chests and chairs — the best we could
Things like canoeing, with fumbling strokes
Things like long trips to visit our folks;
Things like camping and walks and schools
And hunting and fishing in our 10,000 pools.
Things like enduring cold nights at home
Then caring no more to winter roam;
All curled up with TIME (or LADIES HOME JOURNAL)
Or a book on Yogi, that bear infernal
Sipping coffee or cocoa — or something new
Like a refreshing(?) taste of Art’s home brew;
Things like good friends, good talk, good food
Things like good books, good letters, good news.
All these we remember; it’s really no riddle
If one just sits back and thinks just a little
‘Cause good things we’ve had; our sorrows but few
We hope all of you can say all this too.
So another good year in Bemidji
(And nothing rhymes with that but “fridgy”)
Are other couples just like us’n?
With little kids always fussin’?
We’re parents jus’ trying to stay afloat
To pay the bills — and live on hope.
Yet extra gifts this Xmas season!?
Will kids grow up with appreciation?
O Wise Spirit, give us the answer:
Was it right to give these extras?
Quoth Paul Bunyan: “Yeah, yew betcha.”
At the start of this season
We’re a bit “in the dumps”
Because for this reason:
Art has the mumps.