Christmas With Curmudgeons Haiku


Just in time for the winter Solstice! Today’s post is not very long, just like the days right now, but it is in keeping with the spirit of the season. Here is a set of haiku, written for the annual potluck dinner of one of my critique groups. They liked it (even before the wine took effect), so I hope it brings you a smile.

Anonymous Old Fart

Snow pelting sharp knives,

Keeps those damn kids off my lawn.

Merriest Noel.

Burgermeister Meisterburger

Whence hope, once Kringle

gains Winter Warlock’s glow?

Keep the f*ing toys.

Ebenezer Scrooge


Truth’s honed bite, Spirits:

The old days oft beckon.

Happy Humbug, All.

Severus Snape & Argus Filch

Grim Yuletide’s hired cops

In library’s Restricted Section.

Happy New Sneer.


Clarence the Angel

Wings, translucent joy,

Burst backs of ancient nightshirts,

Herald frozen cheeks.

Donner, Father of Rudolph


Not just that kid’s nose

Is big and glowing bright.

Ego. His mother weeps.

Mrs. Claus

Deep Yule-night silence,

Old man’s finally gone out.

Yeti calls. At last.

The Grinch

Whereville is Whoville?

Who the hellville cares nowville?

Hearts grown too fast, break.

Stay tuned for January’s post in which I interview medieval scholar Ansel Clarke (he’s not really that old), about medieval magic and fantasy. In the meantime, I wish you and yours the happiest of holiday seasons, however you may choose to celebrate it, and a truly wondrous New Year.

MENACING ENTITY OF THE MONTH: MISTLETOE.

I had considered choosing fallen angels, which would be very menacing indeed, especially if they fell all in a plague-like heap in your yard, as in our picture here.

But I try to stick to “real” menaces. I also considered family gatherings, because, just, sometimes . . . grr. And they can resemble massed fallen angels - or an army of hangry bears.

But truly, I am quite fond of my far-flung family and don’t see them often enough, so I went with mistletoe.


Why mistletoe? Do you have pets? Children? Are you overly fond of eating your greens? Then beware mistletoe’s toxic nature. Both the leaves and berries are poisonous if ingested. So is mistletoe tea. Some kinds of mistletoe are more dangerous than others: the American variety (Phoradendron serotinum, containing phoratoxin) is less lethal than the European variety (Viscum album containing tyramine). Both sets of poisons can lead to blurred vision, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, blood pressure changes, and possibly death. Then, there is the potential devastating impact of broken hearts and humiliation from hanging around beneath the mistletoe, waiting, just waiting, all alone, for what seems like hours . . . Sigh. But I digress. So, approach this lovely, innocent-looking plant with caution, and hopefully it doesn’t end up in the salad plate of a particularly obnoxious drunk uncle.

Once again, Happy Holidays!

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