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Twas the Night Before Christmas – Chemistry Edition

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by Merrissa Sorrentino

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the lab
not a beaker was burning, nor lid left uncapped.
Our goggles were hung in the cupboard with care
in the hopes that St Mendeleev soon would be there.

The chemists were nestled, all snug in their coats
going over molecular formula notes.
The Professor in glasses reciting compounds
had just finished jotting the last of them down

when outside the door there arose such a clatter.
I sprang from my desk to see – what was the matter?
We raced down the hallway in a quantum-like flash
dodging the test tubes and measuring flasks.

The light of the fluorescent tubes up above
gave a lustre as bright as my chemical gloves
when what, to my wandering eyes, should appear
but a Chemist with Eight Elemental Reindeer!

Faster than light, these elements came.
He whistled and shouted and called them by name:

“Now Bismuth! Now Carbon! Now Krypton and Bromine!
On Copper! On Cobalt! On Xenon and Fluorine!
From out of the hallway and into the class
they formed an unusual luminous gas.

Like heat that emerges within a reaction
their atoms were striving for more interaction.
So off with their lids, the elements flew
with a gift for the lab, and St Mendeleev too.

And then in a startle, I heard from the hall
the clinking of pipettes and glass-mixing rods.
As I drew in my head and was turning to look
St Dmitri appeared with his chemistry book.

He was dressed all in white, from his head to his foot
but his coat was all tarnished with ashes and soot.
With a bundle of research files flung on his back
he looked like a student who’s ready for class.

His eyes – how they peered – as he looked all around.
His cheeks – were as pink as a Lithium compound.
Through the beard on his chin, in Titanium white
the smirk on his face conveyed utter delight.

The stub of his pencil, he held in his hand
as a sign of a very intelligent man.
And with it, he granted us wisdom and knowledge
which quickly began to envelop the college.

He spoke of a dream where elements took structure
like a symphony of atoms, and he, the conductor.
When arranged on the table in front of us all
he gave us a wink, then was gone from the hall.

He went in a flash as he called for his Elements.
Away they all flew in a cloud of intelligence.
But I heard him yell out – before fading away …

“HAPPY RESEARCH and to all, a good day!”