The Night Before Christmas 1992

’Twas the night before Christmas, 1992,
And a free-floating anxiety had made us all blue.

We monitored our boundaries with meticulous care,
In order to keep out of each other’s hair.
The snowman outdoors was only half-built,
’Cause we’d seen that our only incentive was guilt.
The goodies in the fridge would stay right where they were,
Lest anyone’s eating disorder occur.
The cards that came in from all over the nation
Were another sure sign of manipulation.
The Christmas tree had been put in the attic,
’Cause when it was standing it looked much too phallic.

Imagine the dissociation we felt
When Santa Claus strode in, shaven and svelte!

“I bicycled here from the distant North Pole,”
He said, “I lost that big belly -- yet I feel more whole!”
“The reindeer?” we asked. “All freed,” he replied.
“Their animal rights were being denied.”
“My enormous stress levels were clean out of sight --
Imagine visiting all of the world in one night!
A stress seminar and some biofeedback
Were crucial in putting me right back on track.
I now start delivering presents in May.
It’s not such a surprise -- but then, THAT’S O-KAY.”

“The beard?” we all asked. “A crutch,” he said sadly,
“Making up for the womb which I envied so badly.”
“My fur coat,” he continued, “was murder, flat out.
My suit is now made of recycled tub grout.”

“My obsession with kids,” he said, somewhat more mild,
“Turns out to have been my bruised inner child.”
“And Rudolph’s in detox,” said the somber old elf.
“That blazing red nose was a sure cry for help.”

“But where are the presents?” cried a voice in despair.
“Look, Santa-our stockings are ready right there!”
“Put gifts in your undies?” Nick said in consternation.
“Um-instead I’ll give each of you a verbal affirmation.”

As he turned to depart, the self-actualized elf
Said, “I finally feel really good about myself!”