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Old 12-17-2004
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JohnDrake is on a distinguished road
Twas the night before Christmas

T''WAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

(My apologies to Major Henry Livingston Jr. (1748-1828), previously believed to be by Clement Clarke Moore)

T''was the night before Christmas, when all through the yacht,
Not a through hull did pop, No need for a mop!
The stockings were hung from the handholds with tethers,
In case we got knocked while going to weather.

The crew were all nestled, snug in their beds,
While visions of new gear danced in their heads.
Mamma in her SOSpenders and me tethered in,
Had just settled down for the mid watch to begin.

When out on a swell there arose such a spray,
That I sprang from my bunk to see what washed away.
Away to the portlight I flew in a flash,
Undogged the clamps and looked for a splash.

The moon on the crests of velvety swells,
Gave the luster of mid day to the floatsom and gulls,
When what to my wondering Steiners should appear,
But an S&S hull with eight tiny reindeer.

"Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
On, INTREPID! on COURAGEOUS! on, WEATHERLY and CONSTELLATION!
To the top of the coachroof! to the top of the mast!
Now dash away! dash away! dash dash dash dash!"

As dry heaves that before a wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with the rigging, mount to the sky,
So up to the coachroof the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the coachroof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew the EPIRB in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the dorade St. Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in Gill foulies, from his head to his toes,
And his clothes dusted with fiberglass from where I don''t know;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a Yacht Broker, or something like that.

His eyes -- how they twinkled in his Costa del Mar''s!
His cheeks were like roses, (from a night at the bar).
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a flap,
And the beard of his chin was as white as wave caps;

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the cap on his head looked like it was reefed;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like naval jelly.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old salt,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of my malt;
A wink of his eye, he ran to the head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
After, he spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings with GPS''s and beef jerk,

And laying his finger aside of his nose, he looked quite lit,
I ran to open the hatch before the crew saw it;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team blew a bos''n''s whistle,
And away they all flew like a full canvassed Thistle.

But I heard him exclaim, ere he cruised out of sight,
"HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT."


My best Christmas wishes to all
John
S/V Invictus

(c) 2004, J. Drake who accepts no liability and invokes 37CFR201 :O)
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