Pushing back the snow,
the barn door slowly opens
against the drifts.
Inside smells are rich and warm.
Hay and straw and animals mix
sparking memories of a long ago stable.
The tarp is heavy,
but uncovers a shiny red sleigh.
Runners honed to a keen shushing edge.
Sounding of hooves on wooden floor
Snorting his readiness to go.
Harness tight, bells in place
Isinglass heater under a buffalo robe,
We disappeared into plumes of snow off galloping hooves,
with mane flying in the breath of nostrils flaring.
Sleigh bells singing their song in rhythm of beating hooves,
crisp air and joyful hearts cuddle under robes of excitement
Caps pulled down over ears,
cheeks chapping, hands clasping,
faster ... faster ... faster ...