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ZD Writing Competition: Round 38 - Results

Which Entry is Your Favorite?

  • Entry 1

    Votes: 2 50.0%
  • Entry 2

    Votes: 1 25.0%
  • Entry 3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Entry 4

    Votes: 1 25.0%

  • Total voters
  • Poll closed .

Spiritual Mask Salesman

CHIMer Dragonborn
Staff member
ZD Legend
Comm. Coordinator
Site Staff
Welcome back to the year's final writing competition! On account of me being very late on getting this post up, and all the holiday festivities going on, I'm going to try to make the theme for this month something managable with limited time.

So this month entries should be:

Christmas poems!

It doesn't have to be too lengthy of a poem, and hopefully some of our writers can find a little time to write something. Once again I do apologize for getting this up so late.

Submit entries by December 26th, 2021 at 11:59 PM EST (GMT -4)

If more time is preferable, please comment below and I will extend the deadline a lottle more.

Happy writing!

Spiritual Mask Salesman

CHIMer Dragonborn
Staff member
ZD Legend
Comm. Coordinator
Site Staff
Alrighty, I pushed the deadline a little bit to get as many entries as we could. Voting will end Friday, January 7th, 2022 at 11:59 PM EST (GMT -4)

The last of the coals in the hearth glowed dimly,
And low and hollow the wind growled grimly,
The moonlight bare on the smothering snow,
Laughed silently thus in its phantasm glow.

Clenched in the teeth of our pup was the bone,
Of our holiday ham as he slept like a stone,
'Neath the withering fir that too early was sawn,
And would stripped clean tomorrow end up on the lawn.

The dishes like charnel from our gluttonous feast,
Lay scattered like ribs of some fabulous beast,
The scent of the meat yet hung in the air,
A silent vignette of a chewed cadavere.

And floorboard shadows from the advent candle,
Bobbed thereby in rhythm to sweet strains of Handel,
Like tongues of flame they guttered and leapt,
To quiet our spirits as vigil we kept.

For this night the sun would descend to the nether,
And wake an old soul bound in snow furs and leather,
With a mane bright and white as goose down feather,
And a thrice twisted crown made of holly and heather.

They told us he'd show on Nativity's Eve,
And a bundle of toys for good children he'd leave,
Or perhaps, it was said, a birch switch he'd tote,
"To beat out the devils!" They'd gleefully quote.

On cue, it would seem, as there my thoughts tarried,
To this side of Styx my judgement was ferried,
Or thus I inferred as I heard then a hoof clop,
And another draw nearer outside on my rooftop.

My mother and father I'd surely believed,
When earlier screaming and threats I'd received,
Should I and my sister keep raising a din,
We'd cry tears on Christmas because of our sin.

And then as the hoof falls though muffled by snow,
Rang out up above, I trembled below,
Huddled up tight on the couch by the tree,
I pled for God's mercy to justify me.

My mumbled petition croaked out and then ended,
As ashes like ebony snowfall descended,
And dusted the masonry under the flue,
Chilling my heart as my reticence grew.

Refuge, in panick, I found myself seeking,
I cast to my sister and called without speaking,
But a scowl contorted her somnolent brow,
Her face still creased from our earlier row.

And that last accusation, my heart, made afeard,
In my conscience, the guilt for my actions was seared,
Closing my eyes hard, I prayed a quick death,
And burried my head and held a deep breath.

The smell arrived first, like spruce tip and clove,
And a sulfury vapor with those, interwove,
Next came a jingling, course and arcane,
They may have been bells, but they sounded like chain.

The way a soul knows when another draws nigh,
I sensed in my spirit a presence pass by,
A spectre of purpose, stern and austere,
Fatherly, somehow, and likewise severe.

The breath in my lungs then gave up its yield,
And gasping and grasping the blanket revealed,
Just one of my eyes in the dark of the room,
And my nape hair stood straight as the thread on a loom.

A moment, no more, set my eye on the being,
A memory that to this day sets my heart fleeing,
Though faced away, I saw what I needed,
To warrant my fear before I retreated.

Like ancient rhymes told, smoke circled his pate,
His shifting suggesting unnatural weight,
His body was wrapped in a monstrous coat,
Smeared black in a layer of thick creosote.

My eyes snapped shut as quick as they'd peeled,
As a gruff voice rolled forth like a coffin unsealed,
"I saw your sister sleeping but I knew you were awake,
It's true, you know, the roll I play, of which the legends spake.

My job, it is, to judge the hearts of little girls and boys,
For one I bring a whipping switch, and for another, toys."
A momentary lapse in fear allowed my inquiry,
"Which" I gasped through welling tears, "did Santa bring to me?"

A silence led up to a wordless reply:
A rush like the wind in the starry night sky,
Once more I peaked out after long I had waited,
The speaker like teardrops had evaporated.

And all of the room remained just as before,
Save a neatly wrapped box 'neath the tree on the floor,
The trivial contents I hardly regard,
As the meaningful gift had been writ on the card.

"Good will to all men, and not just to saints,
Mercy's unbounded by mortal restraints,
By grace I have left this, your spirits to lift,
For what is a present but an undeserved gift?"

The snow falls white,
The lights shine bright,
It's time for fright,
This Christmas night.

Small children sleep,
But soon they'll weep,
When Santa reaps,
The naughty list to keep.

Upon the roof click click clack,
Ol Saint Nick prepares his burlap sack,
Where naughty kids will soon be packed,
For a post Christmas delivery snack.

So on Christmas night,
Best hope you've done right,
And maybe, you just might,
Escape Saint Nick's naughty appetite.


Warmth from a crackling fire greets biting winter air
In the doorway, like a long-awaited reunion between friends.
Heads and smiles pass one by one beneath the garland and mistletoe
Draped lightly over the bustling home’s entrance.
Excited young ones roam the cherry hardwood floors of the living room
Eagerly wondering what lovely gifts might be brought their way
Come morning.

Cousins, brothers, sisters, aunts, and uncles alike
Scramble around, stealing any unclaimed spot as their own
While bringing with them whatever morsels of festive food
—Both savory and sweet—
And drink they can snatch up.

Amidst this scene,
Spirited laughter, mildly drunken singing, and the pattering of feet
Fill the air.
Joyful sounds indeed, but soon enough
A robust, yet gentle voice calls for quiet—
Never would a holiday pass without
A thoughtful—even dramatic—reading of the
Tale of the first Christmas.

Breaking the hushed silence,
The storytelling begins,
Everyone in the room filled with
Peace, bliss, love—all the emotions that
Often burn in the hearts and minds
Of man at this time of year.

A beautiful sight, indeed,
One that will remain etched in the memories
Of those young and those old—and all in between.
Not merely a brief event,
To be soon forgotten,
Holiday-Time is meant to linger
Within every soul, within every mind,
To exude its spirit all the yearlong.

Where there should be peace, there is chaos.
Fleeting, distant, dreamy.
The sound of raindrops.
Not all is gleamy.

But where there is hope, there is a spark.
Glistening, warming, radiant.
The glow of the star in the dark.
Joy is made salient.

Hyrulian Hero

Zelda Informer Codger
Oct 6, 2016
#2 gets my vote, it's not easy to rhyme the same sound four times for a poem and each stanza here was rhymed four times. The subject matter was good too, it's good to be reminded that there are actions and states that are wrong and others that are right.

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