The Day After Christmas Visit
Michael D. Armstrong    01/06/2020

Twas the day after Christmas
when all thru the house,
all the grownups were groaning,
sure, even the mouse.

The stockings were torn
from the chimney without care,
in no hope that some magic
might still be in there.

The children were settled
in front of the screen
playing that infernal
electronic game machine.

And Mama with her headache
and I with my gout
were trying to recover
from our overindulgence bout,

when out on the counter,
I spotted some pie;
I couldn't help eating it,
then thought I would die.

Away to the bathroom,
I tore open the door;
I was anxious to heave,
couldn't wait anymore.

I yelled to the woman,
"Call the Doc quick.
It might be fatal,
I'm feeling real sick."

When what to my wondering
eyes should appear,
but a big black hearse
coming out of the mirror.

With a sinister old driver
in a dark dreary smock;
I knew in a moment
it wasn't old Doc.

More eager than coursers
his bearers they came,
and he whistled and spoke,
and called them by name.

"Destroyer and Waster,
Destructor, Time Keeper,
Demise and Decease,
I'm the Grim Reaper.

To the end of his life,
to the finish, I call.
Now take away! Take away!
Take away all!"

As I drew back my head
and was still turning green,
he came to confront me
with business, I mean.                                     back to top

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His eyes, how they pierced,
even though hollow,
my throat was dry,
and I couldn't swallow.

Pale and scraggly,
was the beard on his face;
just looking at this
made my heart race.

The stump of a cig
he held tight in his teeth,
and the smoke, it encircled
his head like a wreath.

He had features all sallow,
pointing finger of ice,
that made my odds worse
than a roll of the dice.

He had a grey cape
and a steely eyed stare
with a cold, grim aura
that closed off the air.

As he came 'cross the room
I felt frightened to death,
and I nervously choked;
while catching my breath.

A blink of his eye,
and a glance at his shills,
filled me with dread
and gave me the chills.

He spoke not a word,
but went straight to his task;
while I swallowed my stomach;
his face was a mask.

I managed to plead,
"It's temperance I lack.
You can't take me now,
you'll have to go back."

He scanned me all over
from my toes to my head.
saying, "What's the big deal?
You're already near dead."

"You're almost in the hole!
since you still want to dance,
to gain some control
I'll give you a chance."

So he went to his hearse,
to his pals gave a whistle;
and away they all flew
like the down of a thistle.

But I heard him exclaim
as they were fading away,
"Ho! Ho! Ho! I'll check you again
a year from today."  

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