A Christmas Memory

by David H. Yocum

Christmases past are hard to remember.
When I attempted my memory to wrack,
Though fogginess shrouds the month of December,
This recollection came back.

When I was young, a lad, just a boy,
I was taught regarding Santa to believe it,
So whether ‘twas clothing or even a toy,
It was from him that I would receive it.

I grew up, for a while, in a two-story house
With bedrooms on the second floor;
Nothing like boyish excitement to douse
By having to wait near my door!

You see, Mom would say, “The two of you wait
Until your dad and I can sleep in”
(Little did we know they’d both been up late) –
What a chance for impatience to creep in!

How could they possibly think I could wait?!
Here was our decorated home….
Was it angst that my parents wanted to create?
This anxious guy wanted to roam!

Quietly down the stairwell I went,
The Christmas tree coming in view;
The occupied space around the tree meant
There were packages – quite a few!

As the bottom of the steps I stealthily neared,
There, out of the corner of my eye,
A life-sized image of Santa appeared –
And, man, was I ready to fly!

By any measure, it was a hasty retreat;
I scampered back up the stairs.
While I don’t know if I was white as a sheet,
At that moment, no bravado-like airs!

I waited upstairs until my parents were ready,
Then they went down on their own;
At this point, I could follow, a bit more steady,
Not a rock, but maybe a stone.

The tree lights were on… the scene I saw
With relief and embarrassment – a mixture –
A proper conclusion I was able to draw:
Santa’s image was merely a picture!

As I grew a bit older, I later understood
That Santa involved imagination;
More importantly I learned, which, of course, was quite good –
Christmas was about incarnation.

God sent His Son to enter this life –
The ultimate gift is from Him;
If He hadn’t done this, our lot would be strife,
Without Christ, our life would be grim.

So this Christmas season, with family and friends
We gather, recalling two vital things:
To our most crucial needs our Father attends,
And salvation His beloved Son brings.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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