The Extra Guest

Odin by Georg von Rosen

The Extra Guest

I don’t remember being told
About old Father Christmas –
He’s just someone I’ve always known.
Popping down the chimney
That we didn’t even have,
With a candy cane or xylophone.
It somehow seemed so rational,
To fly from Perth to Honolulu,
Via Cape Town and Cologne –
But strangest yet, I never even
Thought of how he was a stranger,
All the year alone.

So when my parents placed
An empty chair upto the turkey,
I assumed it was for him.
And when a neighbour came instead,
Or refugee, or homeless man –
I didn’t find it grim.
As long as he possessed a beard,
I believed in Father Christmas –
Even with a pseudonym.
He wore a diff’rent face, each year –
But so did Mother Goose,
And Peter Pan, and Tiny Tim.

For all the gifts he gave,
Did he ever get one in return,
From Moscow to the Amazon ?
Each year, I’d long to thank him,
But the meal would soon be over
And my moment never seized upon.
Yet in my mind, he’d wink, and say,
“Don’t worry, I already know.”
And then he would be gone.
We never get to give a gift to him,
But ev’ry year,
Instead we pay it forward, pass it on.

Humbug on High



Humbug on High

I’m sorry, kids, I cannot lie,
That flash you see across the sky
On this, the night of Christmas Eve,
Is not a magic flying sleigh,
However much you may believe.
I’m sorry, kids, I cannot lie,
The laws of physics still hold sway.

But do you know, kids, what you see ?
That dashing light, what can it be ?
The ISS is flying by –
Or rather, falling, always falling,
Falling through our Christmas sky.
And far more magic than a sleigh,
This shining star on Christmas Day.

I’m Making a List, I’m Checking it Twice


I’m Making a List, I’m Checking it Twice

Hey, kids ! I know a magic word,
That stops Christmas blues and scoffed disdain
From ever being heard

Now, kids, attempt to listen not
And don’t endure their upset or profane,
Nor cynicism’s rot

So kids, declare “Oh, humbug, yea !
Oh partypoop, oh blanket-wet, begone !
I won’t hear what you say.”

Then kids, a flush of thwarted rouge
Should stop them speechless dead, so follow on
With “killjoy” first, then “scrooge”.

But kids, don’t give their logic chance,
Just plug your ears and “Humbug !” them away
With loyal ignorance.

And kids, believe your parents’ lies
Of chimneys, reindeer, magic sack and sleigh –
Don’t doubt or analyse.

Oh, kids, you have obeyed me well,
And kept their urbane trickery afar
To keep you feeling swell.

Yes, kids, you must avoid such nous
Just like the good consumers that you are
And all is fine. Or else !

Spider Spiters

chalk spider


Spider Spiters

Innocent spiders close down schools
When ignorant humans panic.
Why the hell are we so prepared
To see them as Satanic ?
We wonder why our schools are broke,
And so is our inside –
Yet choose which phobias we’ll stoke,
And wear our hates with pride –
It only takes the merest sight
To send us shrieking with delight.
Our fears are learned, and screeching
Ain’t what our schools should teach in.

Far, far better we learn to love
The harmless ones, at least –
Let our babies play with monies,
Let our kids embrace the beast.
Rearing spinners out of eggs,
And never let the wolves repulse –
Daddy, bring a daddy-longlegs,
Mama, bring a widow-false –
Or better yet, we should be shown
To watch awhile, then leave alone.
And maybe then, here’s hoping,
The schools can all stay open.

Nominative Determinism

The Entrepreneur by Kathy Morris


Nominative Determinism

Dammerung Dasching:
A girl with one hell of a heck of a name !
It’s hardly her fault, of course,
She didn’t choose it –
Her thunderbolt handle is hardly her blame –
In fact, it’s absurd,
But her parents once heard
Of the power a moniker has on its wearer,
And children so labelled
Were feted and fabled,
Endorsing their promise upon the proud bearer.
And so she became
An incentive for fame,
Did Dammerung Dasching – the girl in the frame.



Talk Like a Pirate

Long John Silver
Long John Silver by Robert Ingpen


Talk Like a Pirate

Curse ye, Robbie Newton !
Curse your lily-lubbered hide !
For thanks to ye, all pirates be
The yokels o’ the crimson sea !
We used to hail from Luton,
Or from Whitby Bay, or Morningside –
But now it’s said we’re born an’ bred
In Lynmouth, Lyme an’ Lizard Head.

From Foway to Zoyland, thar we blow
From Durdle Door to Westward Ho !

Ye scurvy-livered, timber-shivered blaggard, Robert Newton !
Ye turned us to a joke, to the folk that we be lootin’ !
Ye’d have us be a parody o’ peggy-leg an’ lock-o’-dread
Of parrot-shouldered patchy eyes fore’er a-lookin’ ’skance.
We used-a be the buccaneers o’ Buckin’ham an’ Birkenhead,
But now we’re jus’ the poxy-pillaged pirates o’ Penzance.

From Brizzle Dock to Davey Jones,
We curse your skull an’ cross your bones !



Little Miss Pinball

Sorry, I can’t find any details about the artist.  And it doesn’t directly realte to the poem, and the girl depicted is older…but it’s just too cool not to.


Little Miss Pinball

I know a young lady named Scatterfoot Sadie
Who cannot sit still for a second –
She hustles and bustles and flexes her muscles,
And scuttles whenever she’s beckoned.
Perhaps all her fidgets in feet, knees and digits
Are gyroscopes keeping her poise –
Or maybe it serves as a mask for her nerves
With her tremors all lost in the noise.

Here she comes Sadie, she buzzes and hums,
            As she zig-zags from thither to yon.
            Here she comes Sadie, and Sadie she comes,
And Sadie she goes, and she’s gone.

I know a young petal who never does settle,
Since bouncing in booties and bonnet.
I know a young rhino who wears out the lino
By clomping and pomping upon it.
I know a pied piper who’s more than just hyper –
She’s mega and giga and terra.
She’s magnitudes faster, with energies vaster
In both her success and her error.

            Here she comes Sadie, with whistles and drums,
Both skylark and trumpeter swan.
Here she comes Sadie, and Sadie she comes,
And Sadie she goes, and she’s gone.

I know a young poppet who just cannot stop it,
And never has recourse to brake.
With swings and trapezes, she’s blown on the breezes,
And whips up the wind in her wake.
There’s some folk who mention her roving attention
That points to some point of attraction,
And some folk who think that’s she’s too scared to blink
Just in case she should miss any action.

            Here she comes Sadie, all peaches and plums,
As her sweetness must sugar-rush on.
Here she comes Sadie, and Sadie she comes,
And Sadie she goes, and she’s gone.

I know a young girl who is always a-whirl,
Like her timbers are tossed on the ocean –
She dashes and darts as she stutters and starts,
And when even at rest, she’s in motion.
Her larynx is thrumming, her fingers are drumming,
Her eyeballs are to-ing and fro-ing –
Her atoms are spinning, her neurons are singing,
Her bramble-patch hair-thatch is growing.

            Here she comes Sadie, all fingers and thumbs,
As she fiddles and tinkers anon.
Here she comes Sadie, and Sadie she comes,
And Sadie she goes, and she’s gone.

I know a young missy who’s terribly busy
Upon some endeavour or other –
Her hoardings and strewings and feverish doings
Are lost upon even her mother.
She’s so all-commanding she just leaves us standing,
Awash in the glow of her starlet –
For we who are left are the warp and the weft
All throughout which she’s threading her scarlet.

            Here she comes Sadie, dispelling the glums –
She dazzles where sunlight is shone.
Here she comes Sadie, and Sadie she comes,
And Sadie she goes, and she’s gone.