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Witchvox Chapter: Local Poetry
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VxPoem ID: 37530
Posted: January 2nd. 2010 11:46:54 AM
The Yule Gift (a true story, more or less)
Age Group: Adult
In our Irish Catholic family
it was hard to be alone
with three boys, two girls and just one bath
in a two bedroom ranch style home.
It seems that all my siblings
came about the natural way:
mere physical manifestations
with nothing to do with the Fae.
Then one snowy Christmas Eve
I came and joined this crew;
by then the baby was almost six
and they had to start anew.
Try as I might I could never catch up
and the others began to leave home;
I questioned my parents, begged them to explain
why they’d waited to raise me alone.
Daddy said I was a nuisance
as I scrambled up onto his knee;
he said, you’re a big girl now
and it’s time that you learned
the marvelous story of ye.
He pointed a finger out ‘cross the yard
to a stump half pulled out of the earth
That’s where we found ye, that is the place
of your wonderful, unlikely birth.
Mother said Christmas is coming
with its baby all shiny and new;
so she sent we men out to start clearing
to make her a much better view.
But that oak tree out there in the corner,
he just wouldn’t give up the ghost
and of all the trees out in the dooryard
she wanted that oak tree gone most!
So we spent all that day before Christmas
from sunrise till quarter past three
sawing through wood t’was like iron
till we cut him down clean at the knee.
But the ground t’was nigh unto frozen
and though we pulled with all of our might,
the stump and the roots held on firmly
and it took us long into the night.
We were winching and tugging and pulling
till the full moon was high in the skies
when at last the beastie rolled over
and revealed it’s wondrous surprise.
For nestled down deep in the hollows
‘twixt the dirt and the stones and the roots,
gurgling and suckling it’s fingers
was the sweetest, if strangest, of fruits.
T’was pinkish and hairless and toothless
looking, for all the world, like a bug,
then it puckishly reached up it’s fingers
and gave me old whiskers a tug!
So I bundled it up in some sackcloth
and brought it in out of the cold
and just as the door closed behind us
the skies opened up and it snowed.
Then into a jar for safekeeping
we watched it to see what it’d be;
as it grew it changed into a baby
that grew till it changed into ye.
Mother said t’was Father Christmas
who left you there for us to find
but I’ve always known t’was the Fae Folk
who thoughtfully left you behind.
For they knew there’d be no more children
for Mother and I were too old
so they gave us a mischievous changeling,
a Yule gift more precious than gold.
(c) J. Lorian Young
Author's Notes: This was truly how my father explained my arrival not only to me, but to anyone who'd pull up a stool and listen.
Author's Location: Concord, New Hampshire
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