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Christmas Story

by Karl Waldbauer

I was going to write of evil,
I was going to write of pain.
Now that I've started to write of that day
My purpose has completely changed,
you'll see.

The palms are aglow with sparkling lights,
Christmas Eve in Los Angeles.

(Loud screeching brakes repeated again and again)

"Joy to the World",
She told me I have HIV.
"Tis the Season to be Jolly",
I hated myself for ever touching another human being
"Visions of sugarplums danced in their heads",
and I saw myself in a hospital bed with I.V. tubes dangling.

(Total silence)

Couldn't scream,
couldn't yell.
Had to have a Camel, that's for sure.
I went outside the clinic;
Sat down under a large palm tree
trying to find a thought.
My head was in the horse latitudes,
the Doldrums had set in.

(Sound of large jet plane taking off)

"It Came Upon a Midnight Clear"
With an audible noise
cherished resentments left my heart.

Ceiling: Unlimited
Visibility: Unlimited

I soared.
I saw through the debris
I had thought was the essential me.

(Distant sound of sleigh bells)

"We three kings of Orient are bearing gifts..."
Didn't sit on Santa's lap,
Didn't ask him for the bug.
It turned out I got it anyway
and still I'm able to love.
I wouldn't recommend it as a present
for a stranger, friend or foe,
but it sure helped screw my head on straight,
when I thought I'd fall apart.

"Gloria in excelsis deo"
I will never forget that Christmas Eve
or the sparkling palm tree lights.
What seemed to be the end of my life
was a gift,
a brand new start.
It may be odd I find myself thankful
for this razor sharp, double-edged sword,
but I see it as a turning point,
another challenge to overcome.


Posted on 06/29/2003
Copyright © 2022 Karl Waldbauer

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Anne Engelen on 06/29/03 at 07:17 PM

I was curious to read about christmas in summer, but what I found here just blew me away. This is such a soultouching story, expressing so well the duality of many occurrances, situations and feelings... just a WOW kinda poem!

Posted by Max Bouillet on 06/29/03 at 10:07 PM

Talk about keeping a positive attitude... fantastic read.

Posted by Richard D Frederick on 06/30/03 at 02:35 AM

hopeful and insightful, a good read.

Posted by Rommel Cruz on 06/30/03 at 12:03 PM

weird christmas poem but very touching

Posted by Jean Mollett on 07/06/03 at 03:58 AM

Hi karl, Good one, very emotional, sad too. Hope your doing well. Hang in there, don't give up. I agree with Kerilynn. Would you like for me to put you on the prayer list? Let me know. Peace & Joy, Jean.

Posted by Glenn Currier on 07/07/03 at 04:24 AM

The shock and sadness are bent low by the courage and Light in your soul. Thank you for sharing that Light with the rest of us and for making those heard-a-million carols sound new.

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 04/14/06 at 01:10 AM

I did not expect this Christmas Story to be so intense, powerful and intense. This is so excellent, I am rendered speechless. Your courage and hopefulness are a testement to your spirit, which will not allow you to give up and wallow in self-pity. Excellent and honest. One of the best things I've read.

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 09/12/06 at 11:18 AM

Congrats on POTD! I'm just suprised it took so long.

Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 09/12/06 at 01:55 PM

This is an excellent read and POTD! I hope you are doing well.

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 09/12/06 at 04:32 PM

Quite the lively yultide telling Karl. Both chilling and entertaining. Congrats on POTD!

Posted by Michelle Angelini on 09/12/06 at 08:11 PM

Karl, this is so beautiful. Yes, sometimes the things we think are the ends of our lives turn out to be the beginning of something we never dreamed about. We never know. CONGRATULATIONS on POTD!

Posted by Leslie Ann Eisenberg on 09/12/06 at 11:46 PM

a beautiful poem, from a beautiful man. I can't believe I've never read it. congrats on POTD. PK

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 12/03/06 at 02:15 AM

Bravery hath not words Nor courage fine speeches But live with faith and hope God bless you, Karl.

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