Every year, they packed the car
and piled up the kids, dutifully
visiting both sets of parents
until one year – he refused to go
That year they ate goose
with his friends; the ones who banned
Father Christmas. She detested
the goose’s gloomy meat.
The kids refused to speak
to their host’s precocious son.
They would have preferred
pillowcase presents to those under the tree
although they knew as well as he did
that Santa doesn’t exist.