New York City
23rd Precinct
- 1955 -


- so go ahead and frisk me, do ya' worst.

Inside the station house, beneath a cruel spot of light,
The woman crossed her legs and whispered, "Guys, I got all night."
A butt-filled ashtray rested on the desk, beside her hand.
A drooping ivy gasped for breath atop a nearby stand.
A phone, a tape recorder, blinds, a thin rug on the floor,
Two tired detectives, cigarettes - made up the roomís decor.

"No lawyer, huh?" the first detective grunted at the broad.
"None necessary," cried the skirt. "I ainít been charged with fraud."
"But killing Santa Claus? Why, that's a capital offense."
"I told yaí once I didnít do it. What, are youse guys dense?"

The second dick switched on the tape recorder. "Donít be smart!"
The first, his hands behind his head, leaned back. "Okay, letís start."

Your name is? †††Dixie Claus.††† And you are? †††Santaís second wife.
Address?††† The North Pole, honey.† Cold as hell, but itís a life.
And on December 14th? ††† I was sittiní in a bar.
He know youíre out? ††† Of course he knew, I took the old man's car.

Did someone see you?††† Sure they did.† I went there with an elf.
Heíll verify the time and place?††† No, Iíll do that myself.
But blood was splattered on your shoes. Your slip revealed white hairs.
Santa Claus got frisky when I passed him on the stairs. †† †††† ††
††††††††† †† ††††††††† †

"Explain the shiny nose we found, dismembered, in your purse."
"A firefly with an ulcer," Dixie told him, getting terse.
"And what about the antlers we discovered in the trunk?"
"An antler here, and antler there - Hey, boys, we was drunk."
The first detective shuffled through some papers, and he sighed.
The second struck a match; it touched his Lucky Strike, and died.

"Itís Christmas Eve!" the smoking dick exclaimed, and shook a fist.
"We found this in the glove compartment - Santaís naughty list!"
"He wasnít gonna use it!"† Mrs. Claus replied in haste,
"And guys, I ain't the kind to let a good thing go to waste."

At last, resigned to failure, they released her to the night.
Snow with sludge was falling, no carolers in sight.
Across the precinct parking lot foul Dixie made her way,
Toward poor disfigured Rudolf
Standing all alone,
by Santaís sleigh.

Max Pearson - 1998