By Stew Diana Riordan
‘Twas the night before Charter, when all through the yacht
Not a yachtie was stirring, though the boat rocked a lot;
The lines were placed on the bollards with care
In hopes that in the morning, the boat still would be there;
The crew were crammed in their postage-stamp bunks
Knocked right out like a few lazy drunks;
At eight they got up and scuttled about
Setting out cushions without a sliver of doubt;
When out on the dock there arose such a clatter
They ran to the bridge to see what was the matter;
They took the binoculars out with a flash
And peered down the lenses at a rather large splash;
The Caribbean sun shone bright in the sky
Making the waves glitter as each ripple rolled by;
When what to their wondering eyes did appear
A soaking wet Santa and eight swimming reindeer;
The sleigh sank to the bottom of the sea rather quick
As presents bobbed in the water in a boxy wrapped slick;
Nick pulled himself onto the dock in a heap
Looking like all he needed was a good bit of sleep;
The crew ran to the dock in a flurry of feet
To see why Saint Nick looked wrought with defeat;
“What happened to you?” Said the deck/engineer
“Your presents are floating all around the pier!”
Santa looked ‘round at the mess he had made
And told the yacht crew the story of the decade
“I was headed to Fort Lauderdale to deliver a toy,
And in my haste knocked my sleigh off of a red cone buoy,”
“The reindeer and I fought hard to control
But in the end we crashed into a rather large shoal.”
“And now I don’t know what to do!
Without my sleigh I can’t hope to continue.”
The yacht crew saw that Santa needed help
To drag his sleigh out from the seafloor of kelp;
For what would happen on Christmas day?
If Santa failed to leave the bay?
The yacht crew knew Santa could not fail.
Instead of a sleigh, they rigged him a sail!
The engineers built him a hull, so sturdy and true
While the inside was cleaned by a festive young stew
The deckhands gathered and cleaned all the salt-sodden toys
And re-wrapped them all for the good girls and boys
The Captain made sure the sails would perfectly stay
In place as Santa journeyed far far away
And the chef! Oh the chef! Baked cookies and bread
For Santa couldn’t leave the boat less than well-fed
The chief stew checked every final detail
To make sure Santa’s boat was anything but frail
The crew packed the presents snug in the hold
Each bow and ribbon shining like gold
Santa smiled when he saw the work that was done
His new Christmas boat would perfectly run!
He sprang to his boat, and gave the horn a whistle
His boat springing to life quick as a missile
Now engines! Now Thrusters! Now lines off the dock!
Now sails up! Take the wind! Let us fly like a hawk!
And as Santa sailed to Fort Lauderdale he turned to the crew
Knowing Christmas was possible because of what they could do
He smiled at them, his eyes twinkled bright
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a Good Night!