When I was little, my cousins and I would joke about Eid-i-Claus and how we were going to leave some bean pie and Omar on the Nile (have you heard of that drink?) out for him. Well, I took Eid-i-Claus from our imagination and used him to put a little Muslim flavor on the popular Children’s poem Night Before Christmas. Read it to your youngins. They may get a laugh!
Twas the Night Before Eid
‘Twas the night before Eid, and all through the house,
Not a believer was stirring, not even a mouse.
The bean pie was baked and smelling all good,
In hopes that Eid-i-Claus would roll through our hood.
The children were nestled, all snug in their beds,
While visions of eid gifts danced in their heads.
And mama in her hijab and I in my kufi,
Had just settled down to watch a PBS special on Sufis,
Then, from out on the lawn, we heard such a noise
So I picked up a bat and went to wake my boys.
Over to the window we flew like a flash,
‘Cause it was our holiday and it was NOT about to be crashed.
The crescent moon was a’shining, a sign for all believers.
My youngest son, scared, stood clutching a meat cleaver.
We looked and we looked, until it was all we could handle,
Then, suddenly, from out of nowhere, appeared eight tiny camels!
With a suave and cool driver that we definitely recognized,
So we ran outside and gave him hi-fives.
As he stepped off his flying prayer rug, we gave him applause.
We were no longer fearful. After all, it was Eid-i-Claus!
More rapid than eagles, his camels they came.
And he whistled and shouted, and called them by name:
“On, Bilal! On, Ali! On, Ibrahim and Riyad!
On, Tarek! On Mikel. On Haleem! and Jihad!
To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall!
Now dash away, dash away, dash away all!”
The children ran into the house to get him a slice of the pie,.
And we could tell that he loved it from the twinkle in his eye.
He ate a whole lot, almost until he was full,
But he left 1/3 space for air, in accordance with the Muslim rule.
Then up to the house top the camels they flew,
With a rug full of toys, and Eid-i-Claus too.
We couldn’t see them anymore, so we went back in,
and waited, eagerly, until we saw Eid-i-Clause again.
We sat quietly in the house and stared at the chimney.
We figured he would come down, all sooty but still friendly.
But, what to our surprise, he came up through the basement.
So we spun around quickly so that we could face him.
We asked him why he hadn’t come as we expected.
He let out a hardy laugh, then spoke in a voice that projected.
He said he heard that some other guy had been using the chimney for over a century,
so he figured he would try something new and different with his entry.
He was dressed in a magnificent jalabia and kufi trimmed with gold.
He said his umi made it for him when he was only three years old.
He had a huge bag that was flung over his back,
When they saw it, the children got so excited they nearly had a heart attack.
Because they knew the big bag was full of goodies and toys,
But they didn’t know that the goodies were for some other girls and boys.
He said, “I’m not here to bring you gifts. That’s what you’re parents do.
I collect gifts for the homeless, so they can celebrate eid too!
So if you have some nice toys that you don’t use anymore,
Just slip them in this bag and I’ll deliver them to the poor.”
He smelled of musk and had teeth that shone so white,
I could tell that he had a mishwak and that he used it every night!
His beard was so thick, but looked soft to the touch.
I use shea butter every night, but mine still won’t grow that much.
He wasn’t chubby or plump, but lean and fit.
In fact, looking at his physique made me jealous a little bit.
But I put jealously out of my mind because I know it’s an ugly sin.
So instead, I just decided to renew my membership to the gym.
He looked at all the toys, and from them selected the best.
Then prayed two sunnah rakas on his rug before he left.
Then he turned to my children and thanked them for their kindness.
He told them he loved their spirit and felt they were some of the finest.
He turned to my wife and gave the humble greeting.
Then, last, gave me a hug, and grabbed more pie before leaving.
We watched as he boarded his rug, and put the bag on the back.
Then he whistled for his camels and they came running in no time flat.
They took off into the air and began to glide away.
The children were left sad because they wanted him to stay.
Then I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight,
“EID MUBARAK TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT.”
Note: This story is just for fun. I’m not suggesting that you tell your children there is a Eid-i-Claus or that camels can fly:)