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The Last Christmas Tree
I saw a truck of Christmas trees
And each one had a tale,
The driver stood them in a row
And put them up for sale.

He strung some twinkly lights
And hung a sign up with a nail;
It said in red

He poured himself hot cocoa
In a steaming thermos cup,
And snowflakes started falling
As a family car pulled up.

A mom, a dad, and one small boy
Who looked no more than three
Jumped out and started searching
For the perfect Christmas tree.
The boy marched up and down the rows,
His nose high in the air;
"It smells like Christmas, mom!
"It smells like Christmas everywhere!"

"Let's get the biggest tree we can!
"A tree that's ten miles high!
"A tree to go right through our roof!
"A tree to touch the sky!"

"A tree SO big
"That Santa Claus
"Will stop and stare and say,
"'Now, THAT'S the finest Christmas tree
"'I've seen this Christmas Day!'"
It seemed they looked at every tree
At least three million times;
Dad shook them, pinched them, turned them 'round
To find the perfect pine.

"I've found it, mom!
"The Christmas tree I like the best of all!
"It's got a little bare spot,
"But we'll turn that to the wall!"

"We'll put great-grandma's angel
"On top the highest bough!
"Oh, can we buy it?
"Please, mom, PLEASE?!
"Oh, can we buy it NOW?"

"How 'bout some nice hot cocoa?"
Asked the man who owned the lot.
He twisted off the thermos top,
"Now, THIS will hit the spot!

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"Now hurry home!
This freezy wind
"Is turning your cheeks pink!
"And ask your dad
"To trim that trunk and give that tree a drink!"

And so it went on
All that blustery eve
As the tree man gave
Tree upon tree upon tree

To every last person
Who came to the lot---
Who toasted with cocoa
In small paper cups,

Who promised the promise
Of joy in their hearts---
And singing out carols,
Drove off in the dark.
And when it was over
One tree stood alone;
But no one was left there
To give it a home.

The tree man put on his
Red parka and hood
And dragged the last Christmas tree
Out to the woods.

He left the pine right by a stream
In the cold,
So the wood's homeless creatures
Could make it their home.

He smiled as he brushed off
Some snow from his beard,
When out of the thicket
A reindeer appeared.

He scratched that huge reindeer
On top his huge head---
"It looks like we've
"Started up Christmas again!"
"There are miles more to travel,
"And much more to do!
"Let's go home, my friend,
"And get started anew!"

He looked to the sky
And heard jingle bells sound---
And then,
In a twinkling,
That tree man was gone!
The End
1992 Howard D. Fencl



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