Christmas Memories

Merry Christmas to my family;

I’m sad you can’t be here with me.

But I’ll always have my memories

Of three kids running to the Christmas tree;

You’d all be up before the break of dawn;

With your Christmas Eve pajamas on;

You couldn’t go downstairs until Dad checked it first;

Staying in bed with Mom, excitement ready to burst;

I’d go downstairs and turn on the tree lights;

Of the cookies and carrots, I would take a bite;

Before yelling up that the “Coast is clear.

It looks as if Santa has been here.”

Pitter-patter of feet running down the stairs;

Wrapping paper gets thrown about everywhere;

Mom and Dad watching it all with a smile;

That we’ll keep on our faces for a long, long while;

Now that our three little elves are grown;

They are making new memories with elves of their own;

My wife and I sleeping in in our home;

Until we’re awakened by the telephone;

“Papa-Joe,” I hear from an excited little voice,

“Daddy says I have to call you, for a choice,”

“I want to go downstairs but Daddy says, no”

“We have to wait for the okay by Pappa-Joe.”

“Well let me get Santa on the other phone,

Just to make sure he’s been to your home.”

Hello, Santa this is Pappa-Joe,

I’ve got a question that I have to know,

My granddaughter says she’s been as quiet as a mouse,

But have you already been to her house?

“Okay, tell your Daddy you can all go downstairs,

Santa says he’s already been there.”

I hear the pitter-patter run away from the phone,

But in the sound of silence I no longer feel so all alone.

Merry Christmas to my family,

I am sad you can’t be here with me,

But knowing you remember our memories,

Always and forever makes be happy.

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Coming Home to Ole Gig Harbor

I’ve walked the streets in the city of Angels
Looking for a job on the silver screen;
Been to Rush Street in Chicago,
The bouncers there are kind of mean;
I’ve seen the ball drop in Time Square
Have worn beads near the Old Bayou;
But, the happiest place I’ve ever been
Is coming home to you.

Seeing Rainier in the distance
Is the first sign I’m nearing home;
I know that I’m almost there
When I’m passing the Tacoma Dome;
Crossing the Ghost of Galloping Gertie,
Makes my time away seem even harder;
Nothing makes my heart sing,
Quite like coming home to ole Gig Harbor.

She waits for me in the kitchen,
Overlooking the Puget Sound;
Snowcapped mountains on the horizon
Whichever way I turn around;
I’ve travelled all over this big wide world
To places erotic and beautifully pure,
But nothing beats coming home to you
Of that you must be sure.

The New Christmas Carol

I went to midnight service in a church outside of town;
It was dark, cold and blustery with fresh snow upon the ground;
The priest is a friend of mine; I met him playing ball in the High School gym;
No one else ventured out that way; the service was just me and him.

He said, “Joe I know you write poetry and lyrics to songs that are never sung;
Would you help me compose a new Christmas Carol? I think the world is in need of a new one”
He played a few keys on the organ to a tune he had inside his head;
I started jotting down words of inspiration; this is where our efforts lead:

You can’t put Christ back into Christmas until you first make room for him inside your heart;
Being kind to and accepting of your fellow man would be a great place to make a start;
Instead of fearing all of our differences, embrace the ways we are the same;
All souls forgiven of the stains from sin, the day our Savior came.
We should put Christ back into Christmas every day throughout the year;
Not just when our calendars tell us it’s time for Christmas cheer;
If every day were like Christmas, peace would reign all over Earth;
We would always be blessed with the love we received from this miraculous Christmas birth.

The night passed us by, the morning sun started to shine;
Even though it was just the two of us, he still blessed the bread and wine;
He prepared his sermon for the coming day when his flock would surely come;
Including in it the words that night, the both of us had sung.

Our Christmas Carol, of course, never did make it big;
But putting Christ back into my heart, that midnight service surely did;
I guess you put Christ back into Christmas, one soul at a time;
Maybe, next year, Father Tom and I will conjure up a better rhyme.

Collude in the Nude

The Emperor is nude;
Yelling, “I never would collude,
And, evidence saying otherwise is fake.”

Yet, the investigators persisted,
As his henchmen all resisted,
While, one by one they pled guilty to mistakes.

But, the truth won’t forever hide,
Buried beneath mountains of their lies,
Not when our county’s survival is at stake.

Ironically, when justice is finally reached,
And this administration is impeached;
America, once again will be great.

I Want to Wake Up in Malta

I want to wake up every morning in Malta,
Until this mess in America is done;
Instead of waking engulfed in this American fog,
I want to be baptized by the Maltese Sun.

America has become a landscape of black and white
With bickering between both neighbors and friends,
I want to be greeted by a rainbow of colors so bright
And peoples whose spirit of community never ends.

While America sinks into an intolerant abyss
Where lies are more common than facts,
I want to wander through streets of mysterious twists
Not caring if I ever come back.

Surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea,
With buildings so colorful and gay,
Steeped in signs of ancient history
It is here that I forever could stay.

Let greed for power take America down,
Let politicians sell to the Devil their soul,
While I am off exploring another beautiful town
With peace and love as my ultimate goal.

I want to wake up every morning in Malta
While America tries to figure things out;
I want to go to bed every evening in Malta
Ever to return I may have some doubt.