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Every year, my family visits my Grandma in Iowa around Christmas. Last year, I came down with a debilitating illness the morning we were supposed to leave, and I spent what I believed was my “last (Iowa) Christmas of childhood” alone, contagious, back home. This was, if you can believe it, not good for my mental health. During one particular night, I wrote this poem. Enjoy.

I can still recall the last time I heard the bells ring

And your face lit up with what the New Year had to bring

This year I sit at home due to a sickness I can’t explain

The trees on at 4:35

It’s December and there’s rain

Merry Christmas, kid

Merry Christmas, so far

Have a merry Christmas, if you can

Have a merry Christmas, wherever you are

The angels sing on

And the children join, I know

I feel so heavy

There’s been so many years since we had snow

Merry Christmas, kid

Merry Christmas, so far

Have a merry Christmas, if you can

Have a merry Christmas, wherever you are

I’m writing one last letter

One last request to heaven, or Jesus, or Santa Claus

Whoever is listening to the test 

Turn back time a year or two

When there were no goodbyes

Bring me home for Christmas one last time

Then mom and dad can downsize

Merry Christmas, kid

Merry Christmas, so far

Have a merry Christmas, if you can

Have a merry Christmas, wherever you are

Have a merry Christmas if you can

Merry Christmas, whoever you are

Carolyn is a creative writing major at KU. She loves birds and spring and the moon and she is very cool. Her favorite artists include Phoebe Bridgers and the Oh Hellos.