By Lawson Gow, author of Silly Shoes: Poems to Make You Smile
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
But this year was different, and I’ll tell you why:
This year we had Christmas smack dab in July!
Mom, Dad, and I thought “oh, what a fun change!”
To do something different, albeit quite strange,
So we all wrote a letter – we begged and we pleaded
For a mid July Christmas…‘til Santa conceded!
He wrote back that “Christmas is not about seasons”
“It’s not about snowy or wintery reasons”
“Just this once, I suppose, that’d be alright”
“To embark on a summer time, gift-giving flight”
So as swiftly as elves we got right to planning
No more days by the pool, no more summertime tanning!
We realized that this would be no easy feat
To celebrate Christmas in mid-July heat…
So instead of a snowman we built a scarecrow
(Snowmen don’t last long in summer, you know)
And in the past we’ve sipped cider, but we had a hunch
That in sweltering heat, we’d prefer Christmas punch
Every year we left waiting milk and cookies homemade
But this year, we thought, let’s leave fresh lemonade!
And instead of the usual pine Christmas tree,
We chopped down a palm tree – it’s more summery!
But we had one tradition we HAD to uphold:
We sang Christmas carols each year in the cold
So to each house we went, it was hard to explain,
I think all our neighbors thought we’d gone insane…
The night finally came – July 24th
Our family awaited ‘ol Nick from the North
Then out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what’s the matter.
What I saw was a wagon…but it’s bells gave a jingle
And I knew in a moment it must be Kris Kringle
Without snow on the ground, in a wagon they came
He shouted and knew every reindeer by name:
“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donner and Blitzen!
I know that it’s hot and you’re all quite sweaty
But I’ve got just one house, rest up and be ready!”
He was dressed in a summery outfit of sorts
With no hat or boots, just tee shirt and shorts,
He had a broad face and a little round belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples, how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
And under our palm tree, each present he laid
Then he smiled and drank the ice-cold lemonade
Then just like that, with a grin and a wink
He shot up the chimney, quick as a blink
And I looked at the presents there under the tree
My eyes welled with tears: He’d come just for me…
Although it was summer, he came all this way
To make sure it was special, regardless of day
And I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight—
“Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”
Bright Sky Press
Where Texas Christmas meets books July