“The Night Before Christmas 2014” by Russell Colver

Russell Colver


Political Version

’Twas the night before Christmas and all through the House
not a creature was stirring (nothing new about that).
Nominations and bills were hung up in committee
with no hope, for ideologues show no pity.
New senators, too, were home tucked up in bed
dreaming of wall maps in all shades of red,
and voters who slept through the mid-term election
were wrapped in thin blankets of sad disaffection,
while out in the world there continued such clatter
it was hard to decide where to look for the matter.
Ebola, Crimea, Boko Haram,
Gaza’s on fire, 370’s gone,
ISIS brutality boggles the mind
while CIA torture has tarnished our shine.
The Arctic is darkening: amplification
enlarges the specter of earth’s degradation.
Ferguson streets are lit up with contention
for race is a subject we’ve found hard to mention.
Yet on the Ellipse in the dark of the night
kid-programmed Christmas trees sparkled with light.
And what to our wondering eyes did appear
but the POTUS equipped with executive gear.
Standing alone as the head of the nation
he took one bold step to repair immigration.
With a swish of his pen he opened up Cuba
and then disappeared to the land of the hula.
But I heard him exclaim, as he left for his fun,
“Merry Christmas to all, now let’s get something done!”

from Poets Respond
December 25, 2014

[download audio]


Russell Colver: “Just read the ‘White House Holiday Poem (Basement Version).’ Doggerel begets doggerel. And how much fun was that!” (website)

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