59: The Canning Shed

59: The Canning Shed

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: It's Christmas!

The Canning Shed

In some families, “please” is described as the magic word. In our house, however, it was “sorry.”

~Margaret Laurence

Christmastime is over, we’re basking in the glow

Of Yuletide fun and memories, some made so long ago

The presents have been opened, the turkey has been carved

We’ve joined the kiddies on the hills, in winter boots and scarves

And though the years are flying by, we never will forget

The year that Grandpa lost my grandma in the canning shed

The snow was softly falling, the stars were shining bright

My grandpa finished up the chores, and came in for the night

The turkey it was roasting, Grandma’s cooking smelled sublime

The tree was loaded down with gifts; soon it would be time

The family was coming, with new babies, cats and dogs

The neighbors were invited to join the Christmas throng

Grandma then decided to the canning shed she’d go

Grabbed her boots and flashlight, and trundled through the snow

The wind was howling ‘round her as she opened up the door

To find a turkey platter that she’d been looking for

It wasn’t in the kitchen, this was her last resort

And she couldn’t call on Grandpa, he was busy doing chores

Just as she found the cupboard, where the dish would likely be

Her flashlight died and darkness was all that she could see

Just then Grandpa left the barn, and saw the open door

He slammed it shut and locked it, knocking Grandma to the floor

He could not hear her hollering above the blizzard’s roar

(Sometimes I wonder if he did and decided to ignore)

Grandpa cleaned the milk pail, then went upstairs to change

He thought about it later, and something did seem strange

Potatoes simmered on the stove, the turkey almost done

Headlights showing in the lane, the party had begun

When Grandpa came back down the stairs, the family was there

But no one could find Grandma; she had disappeared

The family was worried and searched the house anew

Grandpa looked distressed and wondered what to do

Suddenly, he stopped and slapped his forehead, said, “Aha!”

“I think I know where Grandma is, I bet she’s good and mad!”

Sure enough, she’d been locked in the frozen canning shed

She’d found the platter in the dark and hit him on the head

That Christmas we spent warming Grandma by the fireside

And Grandpa had a goose egg on his head and two black eyes

We had our meal and opened gifts and got the kids to bed

But today we laugh about our Grandma in the canning shed

~Gloria Jean Hansen

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