The Night(Mare) Before Christmas

  • Chaos christmas at the barn
  • ‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the barn
  • All the horses were resting, well-fed and warm.
  • Their stockings were hung this time of year
  • In hopes that apples and carrots soon would appear.


  • The barn Christmas tree lights were all turned out,
  • But horse cookie decorations still twinkled about.
  • The barn work for the night was all done,
  • It was time to get ready for tomorrow’s sun.


  • I in my yoga pants and my dog at my feet
  • Had just closed my eyes to try to get some sleep.
  • When out in the barn there started such a racket
  • That I jumped into my boots and pulled on my jacket.


  • We ran to the barn as fast as we could
  • Because the sound sounded a lot like breaking wood.
  • The barn light out front made things as bright as day,
  • But when I looked down the aisle I was filled with dismay.


  • Well, what to my sleepy eyes should I see?
  • But a big chestnut mare who tipped over the barn Christmas tree.
  • Her eyes, they flashed and her nostrils, they flared
  • And her huge white teeth were already bared


  • She grabbed all the carrots and gobbled half the cookies
  • Kicked in the grain room door and ate all those goodies
  • She got into the hay barn and pulled open several bales
  • Opened all the stall doors and galloped toward the trails.


  • The horses were loose!  I knew I’d get the blame,
  • So I whistled and shouted and called them by name.
  • “Come Blazer, here Indy, stop Wizard, come Guy,
  • Whoa Stormy, stay DJ,” I yelled to the sky.
  • Slowly the horses broke away from the mare’s spell
  • And returned to their stalls and again all was well.
  • The mare stomped her foot and asked “why did you appear?”
  • “If it wasn’t for you, I could have blamed it all on Santa’s reindeer!”


  • She neighed to the horses to wish them good cheer
  • Then galloped across the pastures as fleet as any deer.
  • When she reached a hill, she turned back as if to say,
  • “Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good day!”


  • I sighed as I went back inside,
  • I knew I’d survived a big scare.
  • “I’d rather have coal for Christmas
  • Than ever have a chestnut mare.”
Written by Kelly O'Neill, based on "A Visit From St. Nicholas" by Clement Clark Moore

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