“The Night Before Christmas”
By Jeff Kindley
‘Twas the night before Christmas on the Upper West Side.
There wasn’t a soul who was not gentrified,
Except for the workers who make Christmas merry,
Pedaling fast with the presents they carry.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds
While mommies and daddies were dining in sheds
And nannies with kids of their own far away
Kept watch on their offspring until Christmas Day
When suddenly out of the lamp-dotted dark
A vision came flying above Central Park.
What to my wondering eyes did appear
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer
Driven by someone quite new to this viewer.
I said to myself, “Can that be Gale Brewer?”
“Merry Christmas!” she called. “Happy Hanukkah too!
Santa has Covid, so what can you do?
He said to me, ‘Gale, I am feeling so ill.
I need you to help me. There’s big boots to fill.’
So who could say no to the fella in red?
I always step up. Now I’m stuck in this sled.”
But Gale, being Gale, was up to the task.
“Except for those chimneys. Oh Santa, don’t ask.”
I heard her exclaim ere she drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas, West Siders! To all a good night!”