The Christmas Pup

dog
Christmas Eve night, Santa spotted below
a small form huddled on new-fallen snow;
and though his journey was just under way,
he ordered the reindeer to land his sleigh.

As soon as it touched down, out with a bound,
he ran to the figure hunched on the ground.
Kneeling beside it and scooping it up
he found that he held a husky-wolf pup.

Snow was still falling; it soon would be deep.
Santa had a schedule he had to keep.
Quickly he carried the pup to his sleigh,
tucked her in snugly and lifted away.

He said “Don’t you worry, just hold on tight.
I’ll get you back safely after this night.”
The pup was quiet, for she understood
that Santa intended nothing but good.

Nestled in his quilt, warmth enfolded her,
settled as the chill eased from her fur,
she felt Santa’s magic touching her too;
but only a pup, what good could she do?

They flew to a house Santa was dreading;
where a guard dog slept warm in his bedding.
Easily wakened, he could not be shushed.
Each step and movement would have to be hushed.

A board creaked just once, and though Santa froze,
that dog was instantly up on his toes.
Santa turned sadly, no toys for this place;
but wonder replaced the frown on his face.

At the soft voice of the husky-wolf pup,
the guard dog below had quieted up.
His smile returning, Santa looked around
as the big dog relaxed and laid back down.

So it continued; at each place they’d go,
the pup would speak to the pets down below.
Each one responded, to Santa’s delight;
he could not recall an easier night.

Soon they were done and he said to the pup
“Now we’ll hurry back to look your folks up.”
But as he reached down to scratch the pup’s ears
he saw that her eyes were filling with tears.

“My mom named me Better,” she said, forlorn,
“cause it was better I’d never been born.
No human will trust the wolf blood in me
and in the wolf pack, they’ll not let me be.”

“Sweet pup,” cried Santa, “I’d give my right arm
before I would take you back into such harm.
You’ll ride here beside me, snug, safe and warm,
and have a new name; you’re now my luck Charm.”

Dear friends, ever since that Christmas Eve night,
this little pup’s life has turned out just right.
Alongside Santa, Charm rides in his sleigh
calming the pets at each house on their way.

By: Michael Williams / December 6, 2008 / Last Updated December 10, 2019

6 comments

    • Thank you Sarah. I don’t know who first said it, but the statement “A poem is never finished as long as the poet is alive” is absolutely true. I don’t know if you remember, but I have made more changes to this poem than any other I ever wrote. Even today, I have just made one more change to the line beginning “but wonder…” That is a line which has bothered me for most of a decade, and last night I finally hit on wording that finally feels right.

      Like

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