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© James Currie – High Park Zoo, Toronto

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny rein-deer,
with a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and call’d them by name:
“Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer, and Vixen!
“On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Dunder and Blixem!

“To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
“Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;

So up to the house-top the coursers they flew
from Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore

I remember the giddiness and sheer thrill that Santa would be visiting my home on Christmas Eve! I knew exactly what doll he would be bringing me as I had sent a letter to the North Pole weeks earlier begging for one and had been especially good so I couldn’t conceive of any other outcome – especially not the lump of coal reserved for naughty children!

I chose the best-decorated sugar cookies for Santa and placed them along with a glass of milk by the fireplace. The obligatory carrots were set out for the reindeer. Rudolph was my favorite, of course!

My Mother did a wonderful recitation of Twas the Night before Christmas and then it was off to bed. I listened for Santa’s sleigh for what seemed like hours, determined to see him, but alas, I fell right to sleep and never did.

I wish children everywhere, St. Nick believers or not, the Christmas of their dreams!

Twas the Night Before Christmas narrated by Michael Buble´