GUEST POST // One Last Time by Sheldon Kleeman

To gaze upon your beauty
one last time

I stand waiting
and wanting

As you slowly
walk away

The closeness of
our hearts
has now made
these feelings
grow apart

That these
two hearts
are no
longer
one

The love
we shared
is now
from afar

Stepping
as you
walk
each
stone
is now
our
broken
Heart

 

by SHELDON KLEEMAN
© All rights reserved 2015

re: To Whom it May Concern

Truth be told, we weren’t expecting a reply, but the voice of a lone deer crying in the Arctic had been heard… so some kind of reply was perhaps inevitable. A certain Mr Klaus was the one to step up to the plate and give said reply.

Alas, all it amounted to was more bureaucratic run-around. Mr Klaus is clearly proficient in saying much while not saying anything. (He could run for President of the United States if he wanted to.) So, we have a question for you, Dear Reader: Are you still a believer in Santa? ‘Cause in the 21st century, it’s marginal, right?

In other words, we are going to need a lawyer in order to make a legal claim on behalf of Rudolph and his friends. (Could you advise us of a decent animal rights advocate?)
1265542358_ornament

From: M. Klaus/Nicholas
To: #realchristmasombudsman; topdog@realchristmasombudsman.org
Cc: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Subject: re: Regarding the matter of ongoing reindeer rights violations
Date: 25.12.2018

Thank you for relaying your concerns about inquiries and concerns expressed by a certain rogue punainen laskelmoiva suomalainen lentävät porot.

1. I am the author of the Reindeer Husbandry & Transport Engineering library, found in the Hague library & all Northern Hemisphere Departments of Special Supernatural Animals Care and Husbandry.

My nearly 1,800 years of experience and my full-time (except during “the season”) research and development has made me the premier authority, not only of the physical needs, but also the psychological development and treatment of reindeer mental health issues.

2. I only hire the fittest reindeer after rigorous testing from Finnish flying and pulling contests, and psychological screening. Some of these temporary hires come back and compete year-after-year, like American athletes, vying for places on their teams.

As Christmas Magic conveys virtual immortality on the winners, they cease to age; with our special diet and strength training, they grow to tremendous levels of strength and speed at high and low altitudes, easily a thousand times the abilities of normal reindeer.

A solid group of winners have developed into a semi-permanent team of part-time veterans. They are permitted to live & train in the luxurious North Pole team facilities, where they do as they please during the “off-season.” They often make extra compensation from countless breeding opportunities they may pursue, due to their “star” status and world-wide exposure.

We do have strict drug and behavior policies, which, if abused, result in probation, free rehabilitation, and if all measures fail, release without prejudice.

Each reindeer is assigned one of the stage names we developed over the centuries. This allows children extra stability in their understanding of the fun of Christmas. It also preserves the privacy of the reindeer team, and their backups during the rest of the year.

3. As our legal team advises us, the combination of temporary hires and special benefits makes them exempt from simple labor and agricultural laws aimed at protecting normal, natural reindeer.

4. On the topic of sexual harassment, we feel that there is nothing sexual or harassing involved in calling a reindeer, “deer” for short. As far as patting rumps, we feel the affection shown animals is an established tradition, accepted and enjoyed by the reindeer for centuries without a single episode of harmful, lewd, or demeaning behavior by our skilled trainers or M. Klaus/Nicholas.

5. On the topic of psychological abuse, we keep the diets of the reindeer optimal and generous. M. Klaus/Nicholas has not grown any larger for all those years, despite the constant acceptance of food and beverage gifts from all the children in the world.

Unfortunately, milk, cookies, Ho Ho Ho’s, and the like, contain ingredients that weaken the reindeers’ immune systems, despite all of our efforts to remedy their response to such food and beverage. We always pass on healthy food like carrots, fruits and other offerings clearly left for the reindeer. We also keep ultrapure water and freshly harvested greens available at all times, should hunger or thirst become an issue for one or more of the team.

6. The only problems we have experienced in the last year or two have been with the one mutant reindeer, who, unfortunately, thinks he is brighter than the others, just because we made an exception to our team limit of eight.

The team has been exposed to his negative behavior, such as grumbling, sniping, and occasional diversions from the designated route. We are still asking our psychologists to help this team member resolve his issues, and he seems to get back in the harness on “the day.” We plan to keep up our support for his improvement.

We hope this answers any questions you may have on the treatment of our most valuable assets. If anything is left open or unanswered contact us at once, though we ask that you please give us some extra consideration for inquires in December.

We hope you and your staff and their families have been “nice” this year so you get the gifts you want and deserve.

And to all, a good night.

M. Klaus/Nicholas

 

Comment by VON SMITH
Intro by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2018

GUEST POST // Just Like Them by Stephen Philip Druce

They wished for a baby boy:

tall,
handsome,
polite,
clever,
precocious,
virtuous,
noble,
successful,
triumphant, but

the boy turned out
to be just like them.

Damn!
Damn?

Damn fools!

who else goes into the mix?

 

by STEPHEN PHILIP DRUCE
© All rights reserved 2018

GUEST POST // Curious Intents In This Warmer Weather by Captain Q

Curious intents in this warmer weather
Knowing Summer will be coming soon
Inspiration & creativity go hand in hand
Shedding Winter demons beneath a fresh moon
I’m tired of conditioning myself for them
My mind feels free & ready to finally shine
Pushing away any thought to merely conform
We get one life & this one is going to be mine
I’m going to stretch my imagination far out
Tinkering with ideas & love for us all to spread
Spring is the return of life to this sleeping world
In the future, how to be remembered when we’re dead

 

by CAPTAIN Q
© All rights reserved 2018