Nemo's Christmas Eve
Nemo was a cat of very good taste,
At least that’s what he thought when washing his face,
Staring at the tree in the living room corner
Just waiting for attention but nowhere an adorner.
“Ah,” thought Nemo, “but I shall lend a paw!”
And headlong rushed into the mission he saw:
No stopping, no delay, full speed ahead,
Leaping into the branches adrenaline fed!
His eyes were wide open, his nostrils aflame
With pine-scented catnip afloat in his brain:
To the top of the tree, back to the floor,
He raced for the boxes of bulbs by the door.
The glass was so pretty, the string hangers so fine,
But he just couldn’t stop and broke the first nine!
Yet, undaunted he persisted, bent to prevail,
Dragging up two with his teeth and one with his tail.
Now, the plan, if he had one, wasn’t quite fixed,
A little bit sketchy, rambling and mixed,
And when he opened his mouth to lend voice to his head
He dropped the first two and downward they sped.
One bounced off a branch as the other shot by,
Both hitting the floor in the blink of an eye
Causing Nemo to tense and his tail go straight
Which let go the third to a similar fate.
“Oh, well,” thought Nemo, without a tinge of chagrin,
“Those are the breaks, now where shall I begin?”
And with his eyes cast down on the tinsel below
His mind took a leap into deep ice and snow:
One at a time, to the top of the tree,
He’d bring them all up and set them all free.
Thus, he hauled up the tinsel for a great avalanche,
Pulling and pushing from branch to branch,
Getting everything ready at the very tip-top
By chewing open the cellophane nearly non-stop.
He clawed at the strands and pulled with his toes,
Grabbed with his teeth and pushed with his nose
To make a glittering, trembling, ice-mountain of snow
That jiggled and wiggled, all ready to go.
Then, finally, with a yodel, meowed from above,
Nemo leaned into the pile and gave a great shove
Until over it went, down with a plop,
To the very next branch where it came to a stop
Knotted and hooked tight to the tree,
Like a giant beehive that he couldn’t get free!
So, thinking bulbs and tinsel weren’t quite the thing
Nemo turned his attention to the lights on a string:
Red, green and yellow, he tugged on the cord
To untangle the mess and drag it upward
Where he wrapped it around as tight as could be
Before jumping back down when he thought he was free.
But, thinking, of course, can be way overdone,
Especially if your tail is still caught when you run,
And when Nemo flew, the tree did too,
Crashing down in a hullabaloo
That flung needles and tinsel high in the air
To scatter and cover the room everywhere!
Nemo, tossed free, stood in stunned surprise
As tears of splendor came to his eyes:
Such grand design, such a superlative result,
‘Twas the perfect, feline, Christmas gestalt!
Then quick to the kitchen and just as quick back,
He brought a can of his cat food for Santa to snack,
And onto the sofa brushed the needles away
To curl up for a catnap and await Christmas Day.
James N. Zitzelsberger
All rights reserved.
ge·stalt A physical, biological,
psychological, or symbolic configuration or pattern of elements so
unified as a whole that its properties cannot be derived from a
simple summation of its parts. (e.g. Nemo)
Heritage Dictionary of the English Language.
ed. Houghton Mifflin Company. ©2000.