The Plight Before Christmas – Holiday Contest

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T’was the eve before Christmas and down by the stream,

the moles squealed and scrambled, as in a bad dream!

The snowstorm that blasted the valley that day

had flooded the tunnels; all nests flushed away.


Mama mole bundled her babies up tight,

shivering, “Where can we spend this cold night?”

Papa mole helped them climb out of the mud.

On mounting the bank, they heard a great ‘thud’.


The family looked up, OH, what a surprise –

a laughing old man dressed in red, filled their eyes.

He knelt in the snow, scooped them up with such love,

gently, he slipped them inside his warm glove.


He’d finished his rounds, then heard of the plight

of riverbank creatures that wet, snowy night.

They swooped on upstream calling out in the dark,

“Any need help? We’re the Santa’s Sleigh-Ark.”


As the sleigh flew along, they gathered a crew,

of rats, otters, mice, and a soggy duck too.

They pulled tight the scarves, all snuggled together,

so grateful for safety from treacherous weather.


The sleigh landed, CRUNCH, on North Pole’s ice strip.

The river crew marveled at their first sky trip.

The reindeer were settled in stable with straw,

but Santa had plans for the damp, homeless poor.


He kindled the fire, put chestnuts to roast,

he smothered with butter and honey, the toast;

he brewed pots of tea, and laid out the mince pies,

then chuckling, he pulled out his festive surprise.


How could he know? Had he planned more to share?

Santa had presents for each of them there.

From wee smallest mole to old grandpa Duck;

they shed a few tears, overwhelmed with their luck.


They pulled Christmas crackers, told jokes old and new,

sipped their mulled wine; hummed yule carols too.

“Three Cheers to Santa, for saving the day!”

The riverbank creatures raised loud their Hooray!


This an entry in Susanna leonard Hill’s Christmas Flash Fiction Competition – open until tomorrow, if you want to join in. Do check out all the other fabulous entries.

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37 Responses to The Plight Before Christmas – Holiday Contest

  1. Joanna, this is wonderful! I love that you’ve continued your concern for and love of animals into this Night Before Christmas themed contest. And it’s so well done (not that I’m surprised in the least by that!)

    Have a happy Christmas on my side of the globe, surrounded and warmed by friends, and food, and frolic — and all that you could wish for.

    • Joanna says:

      Aha, you know me well, Beth, yes I had to sneak some animals in trouble into this one 😉 Thank you for you warm wishes and back atcha in multiple doses.

  2. Wow! Brilliant Joanna, just brilliant. I couldn’t help but read it again out loud swinging along to the tune… That was so well written and as Beth said it’s lovely to see you keep your animal theme here.
    (ps: glad you liked the ecard, all the Best for a successful 2012)

  3. This is a wonderful poem. I really enjoyed reading your entry.
    Is this the MOST fun contest…or what????

  4. A fun, fun story – Santa’s sleigh ark! All of these stories have added to my Christmas cheer.

  5. Lovely, fun entry Joanna. It is well written. Have a great trip! Merry Christmas!

  6. Absolutely delightful! So glad the soggy duck and his pals were saved!

  7. This is so sweet….I can just see the poor wee souls huddled in the dark and the cold. Good old Santa Claus.

  8. This was great! How could anyone resist a cute mole?!

  9. So adorable Joanna! I love Santa slipping the moles into his warm glove. Precious.

  10. Joanna, this is a precious poem…I can sense your love of God’s creatures. And the comparison to Noah’s ark is clever! Have a blessed Christmas season…

  11. Natalie says:

    I loved it. Sweet, sweet, story–and of course, very well written! 🙂

  12. Miranda Paul says:

    How fun! I love the big guy in red. I bet you enjoyed writing this. You’re a great nature writer. How long did it take to do it? I certainly felt rushed!

    Well, good job and Merry Christmas!

    • Joanna says:

      I worked on it for a week, Miranda, and I certainly felt I needed longer to tweak more – check I am showing not telling – work on better verb choices etc. but I still had a lot of fun writing it!

      Merry Christmas to you too!

  13. Michelle marple says:

    Clever you! I love it x

  14. Susanna says:

    What a wonderful story, Joanna! Your love of animals shines through 🙂 Lovely, original story and great job with the rhyme! Thanks for joining in the fun 🙂

  15. Joanna, I couldn’t wait to read your poem, and as I expected, it is wonderful! It is not an easy task to describe something as you did in such marvelous detail-and make it rhyme! Very sweet poem- an excellent entry! 🙂

  16. Jo Hart says:

    Such a sweet, warm and fuzzy poem. Just gorgeous.

  17. Cathy Mealey says:

    This is my favorite part:
    He knelt in the snow, scooped them up with such love,
    gently, he slipped them inside his warm glove.

    Good old Santa, looking out for the needs of all creatures great and small!

    Really nice Joanna! Happy Christmas!

  18. Joanna says:

    Merry Christmas, Cathy! This is my favorite image too!

  19. How did I miss this, it’s definitely my favorite. Love the animals and hilarity. Great job!

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