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Christmas tree, O’ Christmas tree, how lovely are your branches — until kitty gets to them

Friday, December 21, 2007 | 4:00 p.m. CST; updated 1:44 p.m. CDT, Thursday, July 17, 2008

This is a fictionalized Christmas carol based on the painful recollections of cat owners during the holidays. Read it and weep.

On the first day of Christmas, my kitty brought to me

A bauble from our family Christmas tree. (Isn’t that cute?)



On the second day of Christmas, my kitty brought to me

Two candy canes,

And a bauble from our family Christmas tree.



On the third day of Christmas, my kitty brought to me

Three slaughtered stockings,

Two candy canes,

And a bauble from our family Christmas tree.



On the fourth day of Christmas, my kitty brought to me

Grandma’s hand-stitched tree skirt,

Three slaughtered stockings,

Two candy canes

And a bauble from the family Christmas tree.



On the fifth day of Christmas, my kitty brought to me

FIVE BROKEN BRANCHES,

Grandma’s hand-stitched tree skirt,

Three slaughtered stockings,

Two candy canes,

And a bauble from the family Christmas tree.



That’s when we stubbornly put up a new tree with fresh ornaments. We locked the kitty out of the room. The kitty bided her time for a week, and then one night, she broke in and attacked. The results … were … stunning.



On the 12th day of Christmas, that *&%@*&%* cat brought to me

Our heirloom treetop angel (beheaded, defeathered and disrobed),

Our tree lights stripped and knotted,

Our Nativity scattered from here to Moberly,

Eight barfed-up strings of tinsel,

Seven scuffed sentimental Santas,

Six crystal pine cones (all chipped now),

FIVE BROKEN BRANCHES,

Grandma’s tattered tree skirt,

Three slaughtered stockings,

Two candy canes,

And a per-ma-nent-ly scarred holiday family.



Mary Lawrence teaches editing at the Missouri School of Journalism.


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