Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Pilgrim’

A Visit from Old Pilgrim

 

Charles Suddeth

Clement Clarke Moore, I do apologize. I just couldn’t resist.

 

Twas the night before Thanksgiving, when all through the hut

Not a critter was awake, not even a mutt;

The dishes were slung by the chimney so bare,

In hopes that Old Pilgrim soon might be there;

The kiddies were all tucked in their sleeping bags;

While stories of goodies fluttered like red flags;

And my wife in her nightie, and I with my booze,

Had just crawled into the sack for a good long snooze,

But out on the street there came such a god-awful crash,

I leapt from my couch and ran like a flash,

Away to the bedroom window I surely did go,

Opened the drapes and blinds to see the show,

A full moon on the cusps of ice-laden snow,

Gave a high-noon shine to objects aglow,

But to my fog-laden old eyes I did see,

A little ole cart and eight gobbling turkeys,

With a gnarled old driver so proper and grim,

I knew without doubt it must be Old Pilgrim.

More bumbling than buzzards, his turkeys came,

As he choked and yelled and called them by name,

“Now, Tommie! Now Gobbler! Now Scrabbler and Fowler!

On, Scratcher! On Ajax! On, Zinnia and Growler!

Go over the front porch, go over the back wall,

So fly away! Fly away! Fly away yall!”

Now trees before tornados they do lie,

When they meet with such force they do fly;

So upon the roof they did soar with vim,

With a food-laden cart and even Old Pilgrim—

And then in an instant I heard with great awe,

The scratching and screeching of each little claw.

As I turned my head and gazed into the room,

Out of the fireplace Old Pilgrim came with a boom.

He wore homespun except for each ragged shoe,

His clothes were grimy and stained from my view.

A bundle of veggies did hang down his back,

He looked just like a hawker showing off his sack.

How sad his eyes—they cried! His ears looked all bashed,

His cheeks were bloodshot, his nose all mashed.

His puckered mouth was dried up and old,

And his whiskers were white-speckled mold,

The remains of a pipe stuck out of his mouth,

The smoke circled his head and headed south,

His face was weathered, and huge was his gut

Which shook when he snorted inside of my hut.

He was gaunt and lean, a sourpuss of a man,

And I gagged as I beheld him and his tan.

A touch of evil eye and a mean, old scowl

Made me want to get up and howl,

He opened not his mouth but tended to his job,

Filled all of our bowls, and swiveled with a sob,

With a clenched fist beside his bleary snout,

And with nary a nod, up the chimney he went out;

He leaped to his cart, and to his team he did yell,

And up in the air they did fly like birds of the dell.

But I heard him grumble before he went into the night,

“Happy Thanksgiving to all, and to all a fine night.”

Read Full Post »

Charles Suddeth

(with deepest apologies to Clement Clarke Moore)

‘Twas the night before Thanksgiving, when all through our flat

Not a critter was stirring, not even our cat;

Grocery bags were tacked by the oven somewhere,

In hopes that old Pilgrim would soon be in there;

The children were all snoozing inside their beds;

While visions of pumpkin pies tortured their heads;

Mamma in her nightie, a bourbon in my lap,

Had just settled ourselves for a long winter’s nap,

When out on the street there arose such a din,

I leaped from my bed to see what it was then.

Away to the window I flew in a jiffy,

Tore open the shutters and felt pretty iffy.

The moon glittered on the edge of the cruddy old snow,

Giving a daylight-luster to everything below,

When what to my red, aching eyes did spy,

But a miniature wagon and eight tiny pigs on the fly,

With a crusty driver who sang high on a whim,

I knew in an instant he must be ye old Pilgrim.

Speedier than vultures his little pigs came,

And he groused, and screamed, and called them by name:

“Now Shoat! Now, Bloat! Now Hogeye and Chubby!

On, Runny! On, Funny! On, Hawkeye and Tubby!

On the top of the roof! On the top of that mall!

Now rush away! Rush away! Rush away all!”

As turkeys before wild hurricanes do fly,

When they meet with an obstacle, leap to the sky;

So over the chimneys the eight pigs they flew

With the wagon full of hams and old Pilgrim, too—

And then, right away, I heard on the roof

The clinging and clanging of each porky hoof.

As I ducked down my head, and swiveled around,

Down the chimney old Pilgrim plopped with a bound.

He was dressed all in black, from his hat to his toe,

His clothes were grimy and greasy you must know,

Pots and pans dangled and jangled from his back,

And he looked like a crook who was opening his sack.

His eyes—bloodshot and dreary! His hair was all gone!

His cheeks were like bubbles, his nose like a gun!

His grin and lips were most delightful to me,

And the fuzz on his chin was as curly as could be;

The long pipe he held clamped in his teeth,

The smoke curling over his head like a holiday wreath;

He had a wrinkled face and a big beer belly

That quivered when he chuckled, like stale mint jelly.

He was thick like baloney, like an old-time elf,

And I laughed when I spied him, wanted to hide beneath the shelf;

A wink of one eye, a shake of his head

Soon let me know I would soon have bread;

He uttered not a word, went straight to his pan,

Filled the sacks with snacks; then moved like an old man,

And laying one hand beside his big head,

And giving a smile, out the back door he fled;

He soared to his wagon, to his team gave a shout,

And away they all soared with thunder and clout.

But I heard him exclaim as he dashed through his flight—

“Happy Thanksgiving to all, and to all a good night!”

 

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: