‘Twas the Week before Christmas
(after Clement Clarke Moore)
‘Twas the week before Christmas, when all through the land
Not a creature was stirring. not a mouse, moose or man
The bags were all packed, the tickets in hand
The great exodus had been eagerly planned.
The children were strapped all squashed in their seats,
While stressed attendants offered them treats
And mum in her aisle seat and I in my plight
Had not settled at all for a long painful flight.
When out on the wing there rose such a clatter,
I sprang from my seat to see what was the matter.
The captain announced, as quick as a flash,
‘Return to your seats or we’re going to crash!’
The moon gleamed like silver on the edge of the wing
Shone brightly and clearly on engines, and something
I hadn’t expected to see up for a spell,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny camels.
With a bemused driver, lost and quite sick,
I knew in a moment it wasn’t Saint Nick.
This tired old guy, torn and wrinkled with care,
Was worn out from shopping, his pockets were bare.
Our eyes met through glass layers, out there in space,
And I heard that man speak at an even pace:
‘See, the elves are on strike, pensions the key
Early retirement and cost-cutting, they won’t work for me!’
‘I’m hitching a ride, making a break for the sea
Pizza, chicken and chips, no plum pudding for me.
I’m fed up with children wetting my knee
Demanding an i-phone, PSG or a wei.’
‘They drag on my nose and shriek in my ears,
I’ve planned my escape for months and for years.
The greed and the heartbreak are more than I’ll take,
And I cannot compete with all of those fakes.’
He pulled out a bottle of Scotch from his bag
Twisted the top, drank deep and lit up a fag.
My eyes were popping, my brow was a-sweat
I couldn’t believe this worse nightmare yet.
I pulled down the window shade and shut both my eyes
Too much Christmas spirit, too many mince pies?
The captain was speaking ‘Hold on and listen up
We’ve turbulence ahead and the pilot’s a pup.’
‘Settle back and relax, the trolley’s coming round
In twelve hours more we’ll be hitting the ground.
Don’t look out the window, all you need to do
Is watch the movies, eat, drink and poo.’
‘Thanks for flying with us, it’s always such fun
To take you for thousands, and then when we’re done
We’ll fly you back to the sandpit for more months of toil
Keep you tied down, exhausted, and trapped in the oil.’
I cracked open my eyes and considered my fear –
Christmas holiday madness comes round once a year,
And Saint Nick with his camels was really a hoot
The babes are asleep, my wife has her loot –
There is no understanding the greed of man
I give up, give in and smile when I can.
Christmas blessings to all, you strange cyber crew
Happy New Year and good health is my wish to you!