‘Twas two days after Christmas, when all thro’ the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a computer mouse;
The stockings were lying by the chimney abandoned,
For St. Nicholas was long gone;
And the children were nestled all snug in their own homes,
While visions of gift card purchases swirled in their heads,
And Mr FD in his loose waisted shorts, and I in my pearls,
Had just settled our brains for a long afternoon nap —
When out in the laundry there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the hall I flew like a flash,
Tore open the door, and threw up my gasp.
The sun on the breast of another 36C day,
Gave the heat of summer to everything inside;
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a full basket of wet laundry,
Vibrated off the machine top, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be Mr FD’s quandary.
More rapid than eagles his excuses they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and blamed them by name:
“Now! Daughter1, now! Daughter2, now! Mr Boy and Son,
“On! Augie, on! Petite Fille, on! Visitors and Relatives;
“To the top of the porch! To the top of the wall!
“Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild cyclone fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
So up to the house-top the excuses they flew,
With the rooms full of apologies — and accusations too:
And then in a twinkling, I heard the voice in my head
The prancing and pawing of each little truth.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the neurons inside words came with a bound.
My clothing may be all glamour, from my underthings to my scarves,
But the laundry were now tarnish’d with dog hair and fluff ;
For a bundle of wet clothing had been flung on the floor,
And I would look like a peddler who took no fuss:
Mr FD’s eyes — how they twinkled! His dimples: how merry,
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;
His droll bearded mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was white with the coconut flakes lingering there;
The stump of a sausage he held tight in his teeth,
And the aroma of garlic it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a smug little face, and a giant round belly
That shook when he laugh’d, like a bowl full of jelly:
He was chubby and plump, a right sodden old elf,
And I laugh’d when I saw him in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know I had everything to dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And text’d all the children; then turn’d with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose
And giving a nod, up his laughter it rose.
He sprung to his ipad, to record such a moment,
And away flew my calm resolve, like the down of a thistle:
For I heard him exclaim, ere he dove out of sight —
This message to all, and to all – FD admits a fault!