Season’s Bleatings

Winter’s a-coming,
The nights are drawing in.
Be sure to pay attention
As the season sets in.
Wash and air your jumpers,
Dig out those Christmas gifts
Of hat-scarf combinations,
The stuff of silent rifts…
The ‘Why do you never where it, dear?’ kinds of conversation
Urging warm acknowledgement of older relations
Stalwart in their giving of knitwear annually,
Perhaps as a penance, or secret joke to see
Whether with pride or whether with doubt
You find the courage to step out
In tartan/ argyle/ luminous attire
Usually worn just to sit by the fire,
Safe in the knowledge the dog and/or cat
Will find real comfort sleeping on that,
Little realising in their delight
That it’s neither grateful nor polite
To stretch one’s claws before a nap
On the Christmas-Woolly-Wearer’s lap,
Leaving behind a trail of hair
That would cause the gift-giver certain despair,
Happy though you are to sport it
Even if you can’t support it
In the spirit of its intent,
No matter how much you resent
This tortuous annual, ritual exchange
Of things you can’t take back and change;
Receipts retained as if to taunt,
The very same esoteric aunt
Knowing in her soul the discomfort she causes
With reindeer motifs and Santa Clauses,
Getting her own back for all the years
Of bath salts and talc.
And no sodding beers!!!


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