‘Twas the night before Expo.

Or Christmas, or Kwanzaa. Or whatever you prefer.

When all through the expo hall, not a creature was stirring, not even a planner.

The seating pods were all disinfected and distanced with care,

in hopes that attendees soon would be there.


The PSAV crew was nestled all snug in their booth,

while visions of global outreach flickered on their screens.

And the client in her ‘kerchief, and the DOS in his cap,

had just finally looked sanguine, resigned to a hybrid chat.


When out on the roof there arose such a clatter,

we all sprang from our safe spots to see what was the matter.

Away to window we flew like a flash,

tore open the blackout curtain, and threw up the sash.


The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow

gave the luster of midday to objects below,

when what to our wondering eyes should appear

but a miniature SpaceX sleigh and eight tiny robotic reindeer.


With a little old driver, so lively and fast,

we knew in a moment it must be St. Vax.

More rapid than swag snatchers, her tech-enabled valets they came,

And she whistled and shouted and called them by name:


“Now Fauci! Now Pfizer!

Now Moderna and Birx!

On Marriott! On Hyatt!

On, Hilton and Accor!

To the top of the porte cochere!

To the top of the hall!

Now dash away! Dash away!

Dash away all!”


And then, in a twinkling, we heard on the rooftop

the thudding and landing of each little robot.

As we drew in our heads and were turning around,

down the skylight St. Vax came with a bound.


She was dressed in PPE, from her head to her foot,

and her clothes were all garnished with nametags and logos.

A bundle of in-person meetings she had flung on her back,

And she looked like a peddler just opening her pack.


 Her eyes—how they twinkled! Her red mask, how merry!

Underneath, it was certain, her cheeks were like roses, her nose like a cherry!

The rest we couldn’t see, but one thing was telling.

She had a little round COVID belly

That shook when she laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.


She was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,

and we laughed when we saw her, in spite of ourselves.

A wink of her eye and a twist of her head

Soon gave us to know we had nothing to dread.


She spoke not a word, but went straight to her work,

and gave out the signed contracts, then turned with a jerk.

And laying her finger aside of her nose,

and giving a nod, up the skylight she rose.


She sprang to her SpaceX, to her team voiced the command.

And away they all flew like they had more meetings to plan.

But we heard her exclaim, ‘ere she drove out of sight,

“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”


With apologies to the spirit of Clement Clarke Moore.