The Night Before Christmas

by Ruth Griffiths

With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, the author of A Visit from St. Nicholas (more commonly known as The Night Before Christmas), here is my 2020 take on the classic poem.


’Twas the ninth month of Covid, when all through the home,
No devices were beeping, not even a phone.

The stockings were hung by the front door with care
In hopes of a touchless delivery there.

While Ma in her curlers and Pa in his CPAP (mask)
had just settled down for a long winter’s nap

When out on the street there arose such a clatter
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter!

And what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a trio of trucks delivering gear!

The jolly lead driver, so lively and thick,
I thought at the moment it must be St. Nick.

He lined up the vans, parked them all in one lane
then whistled and shouted and called them by name:

“On FedEx, on Postal, on striped Purolator
we’ll deliver these gifts … sooner or later.”

The caravan halted and out jumped three guys
masked, gloved and shields placed over their eyes.

They slid open van doors and lowered tailgates.
What did they have there? I hardly could wait!

They lifted out packages – large, medium, small
from Amazon, Kijiji and one from the mall.

They brought a few packages up to my door
then went to my neighbor’s to place a few more.

I stepped out and called to them, “Who are you guys?
you look like St. Nick but you wear a disguise.

“I can’t see your cheeks or or droll little mouth.
Your mask covers your face, you’re expression’s gone south.

“Are you really and truly the famous St. Nick?
Are these masks a disguise, or just some kinda trick?”

“We’re the Christmas delivery crew keeping six feet apart.
We’ll sanitize everything before we depart.”

They closed all the hatches and got set to move.
They’d done all they could and had nothing to prove.

But I heard them exclaim ‘ere they drove out of sight:
“Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.”