The Best Gift

Six warm quarters fall in my hands,

I cradle them gently,

And stare at them with bewildered eyes,

As if what’s fallen into my grasp,

Is nothing short of gold.

My vision glazes over

As I think of all the ten-cent candies

And five-cent bubblegums I can buy.

Every cent is gone,

Before I take my next breath.

Mother calls to me,

Scolding my rudeness.

I look to the weathered man,

And smile my thanks.

His grin is one of triumph and toothlessness,

As he waves and waddles away.

To him,

He’s given me the greatest Christmas present,

And then he’s gone,

Before I can tell him myself


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