‘Twas the day before Christmas and all through the stable
All the creatures were stirring, even old Mable.
The horses were restless and wanting their feed,
Like me with cookies, it’s called Christmas greed.

I dole out the grain, filling each tub,
And they all tuck in inhaling their grub.
I go to the tack room, grab the hose from the floor,
Where it had thawed and leaked, leaving a chore.

I hook up the hose and drag it outside,
This weather is for the birds and old yuletide.
I return to the barn to gather the hay,
Put it in a barrow and wheel it away.

A flake in this paddock and in that one too,
I step in a snowdrift and it pulls off my shoe.
I stumble and teeter but stay on my feet,
I’m too clever for winter, it won’t have me beat.

Ice has formed, all wretched and clear,
I kick at the buckets, I look, and I jeer.
In pails and in potholes and pipes in the wall.
Smash away! Smash away! Smash away all!

Horses turned out and waters filled up,
I slip on some ice and that really sucks.
I hobble inside with a hand on my back,
I made up my mind, I’m not cleaning the tack.

Pitchfork in hand, it is time to muck out,
A moment to ponder what life is about.
But the shavings are frozen and coming out clumpy,
I kick them and bash them but they’re still awfully lumpy.

I brought lots of cookies to eat and to share,
But I’m cold and hungry and don’t really care.
They won’t know that they will miss,
Mouthful upon mouthful of Christmassy bliss.

Cookies all gone, and it is time to ride,
First horse up is the freshly clipped Hyde.
I’m thinking right now I don’t care for his name,
But if I’m quick and I’m clever I’ll grab some mane.

He seems a bit perky, I see the white of his eye,
But onwards and upwards, I say with a sigh.
Just a quick ride, keep it quiet and short,
I know I now sound like a big worrywart.

When out in the arena there arose a loud clatter,
I ran to the door to see what was the matter.
Ten tons of snow slide down the tin roof,
Hitting the ground in a white fluffy poof.

Hyde is fine, unbothered he seems,
But I went for the lunge line, safer I deem.
He is a good boy, despite the look on his face,
But I’ll lunge the rest too, just to be safe.

The sun almost set, and the day almost done,
Just dinner to feed and then home I run.
Each horse gets treat and their supplements too,
I add hot water and concoct a brew.

Bran mashes are given all warm and mushy,
And blankets are layered, and the horses look puffy.
Stockings are hanging with a carrot inside,
I even give two to old Mr. Hyde.

Warm and comfy each tucked in their bed,
I walk down the aisle, patting each head.
I turn to the horses before I switch out the light,
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Feature image: Rebecca Berry Photography