The Great Yule Day Race

by Martin Calderwood

As Reported by Gruff the Troll

 

“Twenty-five ‘K’–Don’t seem all that far.”

Said Skeek as he strapped on his skies.

“It’s mostly downhill ‘cept a couple of ‘K’,

To me this ol’ race is a breeze.”

 

And there’s plenty of ice on which I can skate.”

Boasted Kosz speaking out with a grin.

“And I’ll run up the Hill and then over the top

This race I will easily win.”

 

Not to be topped old Gruff looked down the path.

“It is me who will top you this day.

My kicksled knows me and it’s ways I know well

So look out and get out of my way.”

 

T’was the Great Yule Day Race, it happened each year,

in the depths of the Wintery cold.

And the racers who came were the best of the best.

Being true trolls both fearless and bold.

 

And from near and from far Trolls all gathered around

This wondrous event to attend.

They would stomp, they would yell as their heroes rushed on by

Then they’d feast at the races far end.

 

Each year was a new course as tough as could be

For the Victor must earn his great win.

The racers knew little of what was far up ahead

They were excited hot to begin.

 

The signal was given, the brave trolls took up their marks

Each knowing they were already winners.

But the victor got spoils and a year’s bragging rights

And lots of fine treats and fine dinners.

 

Ahead stood young Mumfy, a flag raised high overhead,

waiting to drop it, a grin on his face.

And then down came the pennant with a swoop and a swish.

And thus it began, the year’s ‘greatest race.’

 

With a kick and a push Gruff got off to a start.

His kicksled with bear grease was ‘waxed’

Behind him came Kosz and then lastly came Skeek

Perhaps they’d been a bit too relaxed.

 

They sprinted at first neck and neck for three ‘K’

Sled, skies and skates going fast.

And ‘round them all nature watched holding it’s breath

To see which of the three would outlast.

 

O’er bumps and high moguls they flew on in the air

‘Tween rocks and more rocks they did crash.

The sled took a beating and a ski it got split

But the racers pushed on in a flash.

 

Now Skeek took the lead followed closely by Gruff

While the skater, big Kosz, lagged a bit.

Up and down the long course watchers clapped and some yelled

“Hurry up!” “Get a goin’!” “Don’t quit!”

 

Ahead came ‘THE HILL’ much more steep than they thought.

Kosz leaped ahead sure on his skates.

Running, climbing and scrambling, he fought up t’ward the top,

So swiftly he tempted ‘The Fates’.

 

With a crack and a scrape his right skate caught an edge

And he fell crashing down to the ground.

The faster than fast he bowled down the steep hill

Into Skeek and then Gruff with a bound.

 

With cries of alarm watchers scattered and ran

While others leaped back in great fright.

The racers rolled by them in a tangle of bodies

In a helpless and terrible plight.

 

At the bottom they halted, all were battered and mashed

But not one was really that bad.

But the skates, skies and sled all were splintered and bent

not a workable piece to be had.

 

Around them fell silence, some rushed up to give help

For some watchers expected a fight

But instead came a rumble from the pile on the ground

That put all of their worries to flight.

 

And roars of Troll laughter shook the world all around,

As the competitors helped each to their feet.

The crowd all relaxed and some started to smile

Then Gruff shouted out, “Let’s go eat!”

 

With heart felt delight the Trolls started to move

Their mind’s understanding complete.

For win, loose or draw matters not in the end

So long as you nobly compete!

 

And like all things in Trolldom, it is really quite clear,

Though Yule time comes just once a year

That the best things in life are with your family and friends

and the Spirit of Yule all through the year!

 

Blessed Yule to each of you and yours.  It is the hope of each of us

here at Guardian Troll Headquarters

that you hold tight to your family and friends,

say a prayer for the world and all it’s wonderful beings,

and hold close this Seasons Sacred Meaning all through the year!

 

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