‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,
Almost no creatures stirred, but the freelancers light didn’t go out.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
The Freelancer wanted to go to bed, but didn’t dare.
The children were nestled all snug in their bed,
But the Freelancer still has deadlines, instead.
Words, art, music and more spilled from his mind,
And the night stretched out long, the day far behind.
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
The Freelancer didn’t stir, distractions couldn’t matter.
Into the house a man did manage to creep,
And the Freelancer only yelled, “Shhh, they’re trying to sleep!”
It was jolly old Saint Nick who stood in the room,
He set down his bag and came into the room.
“It’s Christmas Eve, don’t you know?” he asked the hard worker,
“That doesn’t matter,” the Freelancer said, “‘sides, there’s a ham in the slow cooker.”
“You can’t work tonight,” Santa insisted, “somehow it’s just wrong.”
“But they need,” the Freelancer insisted, “their websites, books, comics and song.”
“There’s no rest for the weary, no reason to stop,”
“You can come and leave presents and then out you pop.”
“I work only one day a year,” said Saint Nick with a hop,
“You work all the rest, surely tonight of all nights you can just stop.”
“There are updates to do,” the Freelancer insisted,
“Crafts to make, things that should be knitted.”
“Well then more gifts for you,” Said the jolly old man,
“To reassure you that your work won’t go unnoticed from here to Japan.”
“That’s sweet of you to offer,” the hard worker replied,
“But so long as my payments are timely, my brain can be fried.”
“This is my life, and this is who I am,”
“Now off with you, deliver presents and leave me my ham.”
With that The Freelancer stood and stretched producing many creaks,
Then sat back down and planned out the next bunch of weeks.
Santa left the gifts under the tree each wrapped with a bow,
Before he let himself back out into the snow.
“Now Donner! Now Dancer! Now Prancer and Vixen!”
“Quiet,” yelled The Freelancer, “if I lose my place again, I’ll steal Blitzen!”
So Santa left, quiet as a mouse,
And no other sounds were heard in the house.
Until at least The Freelancer headed to bed,
Already thinking of tomorrow’s deadlines instead.
–from ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore, modified by Adam P. Knave