Edgar Albert Guest

20 August 1881 - 5 August 1959 / Birmingham / England

A Boy At Christmas

If I could have my wish to-night it would not be for wealth or fame,
It would not be for some delight that men who live in luxury claim,
But it would be that I might rise at three or four a. m. to see,
With eager, happy, boyish eyes, my presents on the Christmas tree.
Throughout this world there is no joy, I know now I am growing gray,
So rich as being just a boy, a little boy on Christmas Day.

I'd like once more to stand and gaze enraptured on a tinseled tree,
With eyes that know just how to blaze, a heart still tuned to ecstasy;
I'd like to feel the old delight, the surging thrills within me come;
To love a thing with all my might, to grasp the pleasure of a drum;
To know the meaning of a toy- a meaning lost to minds blase;
To be just once again a boy, a little boy on Christmas Day.

I'd like to see a pair of skates the way they looked to me back then,
Before I'd turned from boyhood's gates and marched into the world of men;
I'd like to see a jackknife, too, with those same eager, dancing eyes
That couldn't fault or blemish view; I'd like to feel the same surprise,
The pleasure, free from all alloy, that has forever passed away,
When I was just a little boy and had my faith in Christmas Day.

Oh, little, laughing, roguish lad, the king that rules across the sea
Would give his scepter if he had such joy as now belongs to thee!
And beards of gray would give their gold, and all the honors they
Once more within their grasp to hold thy present fee of happiness.
Earth sends no greater, surer joy, as, too soon, thou, as I, shall say,
Than that of him who is a boy, a little boy on Christmas Day.
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