What happens when Santa spends Christmas at his in-laws?

Cuddly toys in snow Santa and raindeer

Image copyright Bernard Young

Santa’s Christmas

(i)

This year,
though not by choice,
Santa Claus is spending Christmas
with his in-laws.

Ask him why
and he’ll just sigh
and say
‘Because…’

(ii)

Indoors

grim as a blizzard
prickly as holly
charming as a burst pipe

Mrs Santa…claws!

(iii)

Outdoors

the reindeer have downed sleigh
and are moaning
about the increased work-load
and the frozen pay.

Led by hard-nosed Rudolf the Red
(who, contrary to popular belief, is not nice)
they are imposing a work to rule
– a no slide rule on the ice
– a go slow on the snow.

Most folk, thinks Santa, just don’t realise,
being the boss is not all mince pies
and Ho! Ho! Ho!

(iv)

After much negotiation
and hard snowballing
Santa and the reindeer
have reached an agreement.

The Christmas delivery is safe.

Unlike Santa, who,
hurrying to and fro,
slips on the fast freezing snow.

Oh! Oh! Ow!

(v)

Christmas Day.
Work done.

Santa watches his mother-in-law
(a tough old bird)
wrestling with the turkey.

Boxing Day!
The fight goes on.

Two falls and a submission.
It’s over.

The turkey’s won.

(vi)

Sometimes
(don’t you know, know, know)
Santa, too, wrestles;
has a bout with self-doubt,
and loses.

At times
(don’t you know, know, know)
he even finds it hard
to believe in himself
himself.

This year,
to get him through this crisis,
to save him from distress,
I’m conducting a little survey
to discover, more or less,
who still believes in Father Christmas.

So if you do, shout YES!

Image of santa with words 'Yes? ? No?'

Image copyright Bernard Young

Bernard Young is an experienced performance poet who is available for workshops in schools, particularly primary age (KS1/KS2). He’s based in Manchester, but happy to travel further afield. Over the years he’s also worked successfully in partnership with Road Safety officers combining the road safety message with creative writing. To book Bernard for a workshop in your school, see Contact page.

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