Christmas as I Knew it

One day near Christmas when I was just a child

Mama called us together and mama tried to smile

She said you know the cottoncrop hasn’t been too good this year

There’s just no spending money and well at least we’re all here

I hope you won’t expect a lot of Christmas presents

Just be thankful that there is plenty to eat

That’s quite a blessing that’ll make things a little more pleasant

And us kids got to thinking how really blessed we were

At least we were all healthy and best of all we had her

Roy cut down a pigapple tree and we drug it home Jack and me

Daddy killed a squirrel and Louise made the bread

Reba decorated the tree with popcorn strings before we went to bed

Mama and daddy sacrificed cause this Christmas was lean

But after all there was the babies Tom and Joanne babies need a few things

I whittled a whistle for my brother Jack and though we fought now and then

When I gave Jack that whistle he knew I thought the world of him

Mama made the girl’s dresses out of flower sacks

And when she ironed them down you couldn’t tell that they hadn’t come from town

A sharecropped family across the road didn’t have it as good as us

They didn’t even have a light and it was way past dusk

And mama said well I bet they don’t even have coaloil or beans to boil

A log apples cranges and such

Me and Jack took a jar of coaloil nd some hickernuts we’d found

We walked to the sharecropper’s porch and set ’em down

A poor old ragged lady eased open the door

She picked up the coaloil and hickernuts and said

I sure do thank ye and quickly closed the door

We started back home me and Jack and about halfway we stopped looked back

And in the sharecropper’s window at last was a light

So for one of the neighbors and for us it was a good Christmas night

Christmas came and Christmas went Christmas that year was heaven sent

Then daddy put on his gumboots waited for the thaw back home in Dyess Arkansas

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