“The Gift” by Julie Cahill

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The Gift

The children took turns on Santa’s knee-
‘And what would you like?’ he asked.
The children were armed with answers;
their characters often unmasked.
‘I’d like a gun that shoots and kills,’
said a naive boy of three.
‘I’d like a doll’s house. I’ll smack my children, as my parents both smack me.’
Santa adjusted his whiskered chin;
gave thought before he answered . . .
‘Why shoot a gun? You could shoot Christmas snaps.’
Wow – what a comeback mastered.
The boy thought back, clapped his hands,
and asked for a camera from Christmas.
‘You could smack your children with loving kisses, if you receive indeed, a doll’s house.’
The girl saw red- her future daughter
with kisses all over her head.
‘I’ve changed my mind. A girl can do that.
I’d like lipsticks in Christmas red.’

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