Christmas Child Tells a Story by Nancy Byrd Turner

“It was crammed and laden and bent with fruit,
The tree that bore in a night;
Rich with treasure from tip to root,
A very goodly sight.
Dim in the parlor’s gloom it showed,
When a tiny gleam at the window glowed;
When over the hills a rooster crowed,
It thrilled through all its height.

“A rubber doll on a distant limb
Stretched with a sleepy word;
A little lead soldier answered him,
And a big stuffed elephant stirred.
A quiver flickered the pop-corn strings,
Fluttered the tinsel angel’s wings,
Tinkled the silver balls and things,
Till all of the company heard.
“A jack-in-the-box with a frisky eye
Suddenly jumped his lid,
And a white-rag rabbit that hung close by
Squeaked with fright when he did;
A dog from London began to bark;
The animals in the Noah’s ark
Struggled and scuffled in the dark,
Back in the branches hid.

“The large French doll (she was very vain)
Settled her silk and lace;
The rocking horse of the tawny mane
Struck up a gentle pace;
And hither and thither the boughs among,
Sampling the goodies, tooth and tongue,
A mechanical monkey slid and swung
With agile monkey grace.

“All was still when the children came
With candle-stars adorning;
Somebody heard and hissed a name,
Whispered a sudden warning.
Now don’t get curious, people, please.
It’s generally known that things like these
Only happen to Christmas trees
Quite early Christmas morning.”