Generally, I’m most comfortable writing longer works. However, I was a member of a local writer’s group some years back and we had a tradition of sharing a holiday piece every December as part of a holiday party. For some reason, the idea for the below piece came to me all at once, and basically wrote itself through my hand.
For a short while, I even toyed with the idea of trying to submit it to a magazine. But then, what market would take it? It is written in a Seuss-style format, but the thought of teaching children to drug Santa’s milk next Christmas seems a somewhat dubious idea, at best. That leaves me with a poem in a children’s format that carries an adult idea.
Not a big market for it, that I am aware of.
Nevertheless, I present this for your holiday enjoyment. Consider it my Christmas gift to you.
The Great Kringle Caper
By Jeff Brackett
“He isn’t real!” said Brother One
with fire to Brother Two.
“Then who brings all the presents here?
Huh, who? Just tell me who!”
Brother Two, his bottom lip,
a-trembling with fear
that he might see such loss of faith,
in what he held so dear,
“Santa Claus does so exist!”
He clung on stubbornly.
“And he will TOO have my bike,
to place beneath the tree!”
Brother One, the eldest now,
by more than two long years
took pity on the younger one
and tried to still his fears.
“Perhaps you’re right and I suppose,
that I just might be wrong,
but how can we be sure of that,
stay up the whole night long?”
“That doesn’t work,” mourned Brother Two,
“I tried last Christmas Eve.
I think he used his magic dust
to put me off to sleep.”
But Brother One and Brother Two
eventually were able
to come up with a plan that would
begin to turn the tables.
That magic dust that Santa used
gave them the basic plan
to borrow Mama’s sleeping pills
and thus knock out the man.
The sleeping pills were in the chest
with others of their ilk.
A simple thing it was to crush
and mix them with his milk.
And so on Christmas morning
as the sun began to rise,
they clattered down the staircase
and what should greet their eyes!
A fat man with a flowing beard,
his body dressed in red,
his belt and boots a patent black,
felt cap upon his head.
This hefty man lay motionless
it took away their breath.
His eyes were closed, his color pale,
Could this be Santa’s death?
“What have we done?” cried Brother One,
in fear to Brother Two.
“Is Christmas gone for everyone?
Oh no, what can we do?”
To their relief, the chest then rose
up high and his breath roared.
The brothers nearly jumped for joy,
to find that Santa snored.
But Brother Two soon looked about,
his brows began to rise.
“Where is the bike that I asked for?
Look here! Where is my prize?”
“And where are all the other toys,
why is our tree so bare
while Santa’s bag appears so full,
a-perched upon the chair?”
They gathered up their courage, then
and peered into that bag.
And then their faith in Santa Claus
in truth began to flag.
For in his bag, besides the presents
Santa seemed to’ve pilfered,
were wads of cash, Mom’s jewelry,
… and the family silver.
“Santa Claus is just a thief!”
cried Brother One in rage.
“The dirty crook!” said Brother Two,
“Let’s put him in a cage.”
And so the cops came to the home
of Brothers Two and One.
They gathered up the doped up Claus.
His burgling days were done.
The Brothers stood with Mom and Dad
and waved the cops farewell.
But as the car drove out of sight
their tiny faces fell.
“What’s wrong, my boys?” their father asked
when he saw their frowns.
“I am so proud … you caught the thief!
you’re heroes of the town!”
“There is no Santa, you were right,”
said Brother Two to One,
And all their father’s words of praise
could not console his sons.
Their hopes were dashed, their faith was gone
they stumbled to their room.
No Santa? How could they go on
with Christmas in such gloom?
But as they went in through the door
they stopped with some surprise.
An officer was still within,
a cop of quite some size!
He had the girth of three grown men,
his eyes both seemed to twinkle.
The Brothers’ jaws dropped as they saw
his badge … it read “Kris Kringle”.
“You boys did well,” he said to them,
“Though you’re precocious tykes,
I think you both deserve rewards
and so here are your bikes.”
Then he snapped his fingers and
two bicycles appeared.
His uniform transformed to red
and now he had a beard.
“It’s Santa Claus!” said Brother Two
as they both jumped for joy.
And Santa danced a merry jig
along with those two boys.
They played for hours, kindred souls,
and Santa said, when done.
“Merry Christmas, Brother Two
… and you too, Brother One!”