Looking back over the years, I find that I have written quite a bit for christmastime. Of course, I post them as the day draws near, and typically far too late for anyone to send them out as cards, or (more likely) as a response to somebody’s chain-letter, spam, facebook rant, or Fox news story. So I thought I’d collect some of them here, on the off chance that they might come in handy a bit earlier in the season.
First, An Atheist Christmas, from 3 years ago (have I really been writing this blog that long?):
We’ll all open presents, and cook a big dinner,
And share in traditions we learned long ago
But Christmas is different for this humble sinner,
No “birth of the saviour”, just people we know.
I always liked that one.
Then, the war on christmas reared its ugly head, and had to be explained:
So it’s Christmas—my Christmas—my secular day;
The Supreme Court decided it must be that way.
As a secular holiday, Christmas can stay,
With department-store Santa Claus, there on display,
Or with Rudolph, or some other TV cliché,
And your photograph taken in front of the sleigh.
A bit clunkier than the first, but war does that.
“The war on christmas” has been a frequent theme; my proposal on how to fight it was… to celebrate it in all the ways the puritanical enemy finds abhorrent:
From the Cape of Good Hope to the Newfoundland islands,
The sands of Iran to the Panama isthmus;
From Outback Australia to Inverness Highlands
It’s time to take arms in the War Against Christmas!
My weapons are mistletoe, Christmas trees, holly,
A yule-log, and caroling out in the snow;
Sleigh-rides and snowball-fights, eggnog and Jolly
Old Santa Claus, laughing his loud “Ho! Ho! Ho!”
We’ll make them forget all the Truth of the season—
The sacrifice planned by a god up above—
And have them believing some bastardized reason
Like giving, or kindness, or caring or love!
I’m devious, I am.
If I had the slightest artistic talent, I’d have produced my own atheist christmas cards. But I don’t so I didn’t:
As we battle our way through the line at the store
And think to ourselves “there has got to be more”
And wonder where “Christmas of long ago” went,
When the meaning of Christmas was what it first meant…
It was stolen by Christians from heathens, of course—
From Greeks and from Romans, from Celtics and Norse—
Why, Christmas is pagan, from yule-log to tree
To mistletoe waiting for you and for me
And lastly, from just a few weeks ago, the night before (the war on) christmas:
‘Twas the night before Christmas; the Christians all hunkered
In basements of buildings they’d armored and bunkered.
They huddled in silence; they huddled in fear,
With thoughts that the atheists soon would draw near
Actually, there is even more back in the archives, but this is enough.
Oh, and every one of these is included in the new book!