The Goblin Goose
Punch Jan 1 1881
A Christmas Nightmare
Once, it happened I’d been dining, on my couch I slept reclining,
And awoke with moonlight shining brightly on my bedroom floor;
It was in the bleak December, Christmas night as I remember,
But I had no dying ember, as Poe had; when near the door,
Like a gastronomic goblin just beside my chamber door,
Stood a bird, — and nothing more.
And I said, for I’m no craven, “Are you Edgar’s famous raven,
Seeking as with him a haven — were you mixed up with Lenore?”
Then the bird uprose and fluttered, and this sentence strange he uttered—
“Hang Lenore,” he mildly muttered; “you have seen me once before,
Seen me on this festive Christmas, seen me surely once before.
I’m the Goose,” — and nothing more.
Then he murmured, “Are you ready?” and with motion slow and steady,
Straight he leapt upon my bed. I simply gave a stifled roar;
And I cried, “As I’m a sinner, at a Goose Club I was winner,
’Tis a mem’ry of my dinner, which I ate at half-past four;
Goose well stuffed with sage and onions, which I ate at half-past four.”
Quoth he hoarsely, “Eat no more!”
Said I, “I’ve enjoyed your juices, breast and back; but tell me, Goose, is
This revenge, and what the use is of your being such a bore?
For goose-flesh I will no more ‘ax’ if you’ll not sit on my thorax.
Go, try honey mixed with borax, for I hear your throat is sore;
You speak gruffly though too plainly, and I’m sure your throat is sore.”
Quoth the nightmare, “Eat no more!”
“Goose!” I shrieked out, “Leave, oh, leave me! surely you don’t mean to grieve me?
You are heavy, pray reprieve me, now my penance must be o’er;
Though to-night you’ve brought me sorrow, comfort surely comes to-morrow.
Some relief from thee I’d borrow at my doctor’s ample store,
There are pills of purest azure in that doctor’s ample store.”
Quoth the goblin, “Eat no more!”
And that fat Goose, never flitting, like a nightmare still is sitting
With me all the night, emitting words that thrill my bosom’s core;
Now, throughout the Christmas season, while I lie and gasp and wheeze, on
Me he sits, until my reason nothing surely can restore,
I am driven mad, and reason nothing surely can restore;
While that Goose says, “Eat no more.”
Return to the Quaint and Curious index for more pastiches and parodies of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”.