"Twas the night before Christmas and all through the camp,
Not a creature was stirring in the cold and the damp.
Army socks were hung on tent poles with care
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.
The personnel were nestled, all snug in their beds,
While visions of home danced through their heads.
With Klinger in his kerchief, Colonel Blake in his cap,
The Staff had settled down for a Christmas Eve nap.
When out in the compound there arose such a clatter,
Hawk and Trapper sat up straight to see what was the matter.
Away to the tent door, they flew in a flash,
To see what was disturbing this midnight at M*A*S*H.
The moon on the compound's new fallen snow,
Gave a luster of midday to the tents spread below.
When what to their wondering eyes should appear
But a khaki green sleigh and eight tiny reindeer.
The little old driver was so lively and quick
They knew in a moment, it must be St. Nick!
More rapid than eagles, Santa's fine steeds they came.
He whistled and shouted, and called each soldier's name:
"Hot Lips, Henry, Radar, Klinger, Trap and The Father
Hawkeye, BJ, Frank, Charles, and the wise Colonel Potter!"
Then, "Igor, Goldman, Zale, Rizzo and Kellye!"
Cried the man who shook like a bowlful of jelly!
So over the Mess Tent and hospital wall,
Came the khaki green sleigh, Santa and all!
Into the compound, the reindeer they flew
With gifts for each one wrapped in red, white and blue.
Then, Hawkeye and Trapper, surveying the sight
Realized what was happening this magical night.
As they closed the tent door and drew back inside,
Santa hopped out -- he had presents to hide!
He was dressed in a fur trimmed camouflage suit.
They howled when they saw him -- he just looked so cute!
He was chubby and plump-- a right jolly old elf;
Hawkeye giggled when he saw him in spite of himself.
The wink of his eye and the nod of his head
Let Trapper John know there was nothing to dread.
Santa said not a word, but went straight to his work --
Filled every sock, then, turned with a jerk.
And knowing his night's work had come to a close,
He snapped his long whip and toward the clouds he arose.
But he was heard to exclaim as he sped off toward heaven,
"Peace On Earth Soon To The Four-O-Seven-Seven!"
Gail Ware June 2000