Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO SANTA CLAUS, by JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY



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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

TO SANTA CLAUS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Most tangible of all the gods that
Last Line: Take us as children to thy heart again.
Alternate Author Name(s): Johnson Of Boone, Benj. F.
Subject(s): Children; Christmas; Life; Santa Claus; Childhood; Nativity, The; Nicholas, Saint


MOST tangible of all the gods that be,
O Santa Claus -- our own since Infancy! --
As first we scampered to thee -- now, as then,
Take us as children to thy heart again.

Be wholly good to us, just as of old;
As a pleased father, let thine arms infold
Us, homed within the haven of thy love,
And all the cheer and wholesomeness thereof.

Thou lone reality, when O so long
Life's unrealities have wrought us wrong:
Ambition hath allured us, -- fame likewise,
And all that promised honor in men's eyes.

Throughout the world's evasions, wiles, and shifts,
Thou only bidest stable as thy gifts: --
A grateful king re-ruleth from thy lap,
Crowned with a little tinseled soldier-cap:

A mighty general -- a nation's pride --
Thou givest again a rocking-horse to ride,
And wildly glad he groweth as the grim
Old jurist with the drum thou givest him:

The sculptor's chisel, at thy mirth's command,
Is as a whistle in his boyish hand;
The painter's model fadeth utterly,
And there thou standest, -- and he painteth thee: --

Most like a winter pippin, sound and fine
And tingling-red that ripe old face of thine,
Set in thy frosty beard of cheek and chin
As midst the snows the thaws of spring set in.

Ho! Santa Claus -- our own since Infancy --
Most tangible of all the gods that be! --
As first we scampered to thee -- now, as then,
Take us as children to thy heart again.





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