Michael was a workaholic,
A master of his trade.
His services were in demand,
And Michael was well paid.
While working late one Christmas Eve,
A stranger came to call.
The man was dressed like Santa Claus,
And this man wasn't small.
His size made him look menacing,
So Mike reached for a drawer,
And grabbed the gun he'd hidden there,
"I'll shoot!" he tensely swore.
But the man kept right on coming,
He never slowed his stride.
The gun seemed not to frighten him,
Nor did he try to hide.
Mike fired the gun at point blank range,
The bullet hit the wall.
But the man dressed as Santa Claus,
Was not injured at all.
He said, "That gun will do no good.
You can't harm Santa Claus.
I'm the patron saint of children,
Unbound by earthly laws."
Then Mike began to pinch himself.
Thinking: "this can't be true!
Saint Nicholas is just a myth,
I don't believe in you!"
So Santa leaned across the desk,
And looked Mike in the eye.
"I'm quite aware of how you feel,
That you think I'm a lie."
"I live for those who understand,
What Christmas is about.
I'm real to folks who still believe.
But not to those who doubt."
"Then why have you appeared to me?"
Mike quickly asked Saint Nick.
"I don't feel the Christmas spirit,
This has to be a trick!"
"It's true that you do not believe,
You seem to care for none.
But Mike, you are the only thing,
Requested by your son."
"He didn't ask for games or toys,
As many children do.
His only wish of me this year,
Was Christmas day with you."
"And that's why I've come here tonight,
To open up your eyes,
To the true spirit of Christmas,
That's where the magic lies."
"It is a contract parents sign,
For children who believe.
That they will aid me in my quest,
So all gifts are received."
"But I have too much work tonight,
My son lives far away!"
"Michael, that is why I've come here,
To take you on my sleigh."
"But before my job is finished,
I've one thing left to do."
Santa handed Mike a suitcase.
"I packed some things for you."
The sleigh landed on a sidewalk,
Beside his ex-wife's house.
The home that he had shared with her,
When she was still his spouse.
The sun was rising in the sky,
As Mike tapped on the door.
He was hoping they were sleeping…
Then footsteps crossed the floor.
His little boy opened the door,
And hugged his daddy's legs.
His mom appeared and asked Mike in,
She'd just cooked up some eggs.
He watched his boy open the gifts
Saint Nick left 'neath the tree.
He enjoyed his Christmas morning,
With fun and family.
Mike could feel the Christmas spirit,
The first time he recalled.
And in the sky above, he heard,
"Merry Christmas to all!"
This poem was a finalist in the December 2022 poetry contest