by Peggikaye Eagler
Adapted, with apologies, from Twas the Night Before Christmas
'Twas the night before Christmas Eve, when all through the house
Not a creature was sleeping, not even a mouse;
The stockings were slung at the chimney with dispair,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were jumping all over their beds,
While visions of sugarplums danced in their heads;
And I in my 'kerchief, and Dad in his cap,
Had just sat down, many presents to wrap,
When in the kids bedroom there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the floor to see what was the matter.
Through their door I had heard a loud crash!
Tore open the door, was it a head that was smashed?
The moon through the window, would it show?
What was the cause of the very loud blow?
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But two mischievous children a hold of each other's ear.
With a look that said, they better quiet down quick,
They knew in a moment, quiet better had stick!
More rapid than eagles my scoldings they came,
And I whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
"Now, children! Now, sons! Now, brothers stop vexing!
Or I will be forced to treat you to a parental flexing!
To the top of the bed! and next to the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! dash away all!"
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So I promised their presents would follow them too
If quiet would not very soon begin to ensue!
And then, in a twinkling, I heard a the cry of a wolf,
The child was yelling it could be heard through the roof.
As I reached down and turned around,
The cat had jumped, it was in the lights bound.
She had stuff in her fur, from her head to her foot,
And her fur was all sticky with something like soot;
A bundle of toys she'd managed to find in the back,
And she looked like a thief who'd found the pack.
Her eyes -- how they twinkled! Her meow how merry!
Her paws had obviously been in the pie, cherry!
Her little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And her paws were red, instead of white as the snow;
The stump of a ribbon she held tight in her teeth,
And the tape encircled her head like a wreath;
She had tape on her face and a little round her belly,
That caused us to laugh like a bowl-full of jelly.
She was chubby and plump, like a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw her, in spite of myself;
I gave the cat a wink, and I twisted my head,
Told the kids "quiet, you'll have nothing to dread";
They spoke not a word, but went straight to their work,
Picking up the room, then one kid said "you are a jerk",
The other kid answered laying his fist aside of his nose,
And once again the volume of fighting rose;
Dad sprang to their door and he gave a whistle,
And promised them he would sit them down on a thistle.
I heard him exclaim, to bed, get out of my sight,
"it's time for a
HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOODNIGHT!"