Each year I share an original poem entitled “The Day after Christmas.” It reminds us that Christmas is not only a day or a season but also a lifestyle. May we celebrate the good news of Christ coming into the world year-round.
‘Twas the day after Christmas and all were asleep
The twenty-fifth had left them all tired and beat.
The stockings were slung carelessly on the floor
Stripped of their contents and of interest no more.
The children were exhausted, collapsed in their beds,
With visions of sleeping-in fixed in their heads.
And mama in her flannel and me with my mate,
Were in hopes that we too might get to sleep late.
When out in the front there arose such a racket
I sprang from my bed like a frightened jackrabbit.
I stubbed my big toe on the way to the door,
And set off the alarm system on the first floor.
The early sun’s light shone bright on the toys
Left in the front yard yesterday by my boys.
Then I saw a car splashing right through the muck,
A red, white and blue delivery truck.
My head was aching and my stomach felt ill,
As the postman delivered a hand full of bills!
The charges were listed in dollars and cents,
Payment would empty the United States’ mints.
Now, Visa! Now, Penney’s! Now, Macy’s and Rich’s!
On, Walmart! On, K-Mart! On Abercrombie and Fitch’s!
November and December we had a great ball,
Come January, we owe something to all.
I made my way through a maze of presents piled high,
Looked again at the bills and gave a great sigh.
Turkey bones roosted on the dining room table,
Yesterday we ate all we were able.
I tried to turn on the new espresso maker,
Complete with a digital, alarm clock waker.
My family stumbled slowly down the stairs
As cordial as a den of hibernating bears.
I bent down to pet our faithful dog, Carl,
But he snapped at my fingers and let out a snarl.
My wife dressed quite quickly and shouted to all,
“I’m going bargain hunting all day at the mall!”
The children slammed the door behind them as well,
Going to friends’ homes for Christmas show and tell.
And I collapsed in my brand new easy chair,
To see how my favorite football teams would fare.
I held a glass of Alka-Seltzer firmly in my fist
Regretting last night’s snack I should have missed.
During halftime I arose from the recliner,
My team was ahead and the world seemed much finer.
Wading through the wrapping paper piled knee high
Something on the mantle piece caught my eye.
Half hidden beneath discarded ribbons and bows:
The manger scene had been placed weeks ago.
Carefully clearing the bright paper away
I witnessed the reminder of that first Christmas day.
The Christ child rested in a bed simple and small
Sent by God into the world to save us all.
Nativity figures of that first silent night,
Made it quite clear what had been lost to sight.
“A Happy Christmas to all!” is because of God’s son,
On the day after, our Christmas has only begun.