The Twelve Days Of Christmas: A Play

Day 1

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: What is that?

My True Love: It’s a partridge! In a pear tree!

Me: Why would I want either of those things?

My True Love: What?

Me: I mean, I don’t even know what partridges eat. And a tree? I live in a small flat. Now I have two living things to take care of. You cave me impractical chores as a present.

My True Love: Well, I was only trying to be nice.

Me: It’s not even Christmas.

My True Love: It’s the first day of Christmas.

Me: What does that mean? There aren’t days of Christmas. It’s not Hanukkah.

My True Love: Sorry.

Day 2

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: What the hell is this?

My True Love: Two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree!

Me: More birds? I didn’t want the partridge I already had! And what the hell is a turtle dove? Is it a turtle or a dove? Pick one!

My True Love: I thought you might be worried the first partridge would be lonely.

Me: I was very specific. I didn’t want to have to take care of one animal. Now I have to take care of four animals! And two trees! I don’t even like pears.

My True Love: Sorry.

Day 3

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Are you serious?

My True Love: Excuse me?

Me: More birds? Really? You thought ‘Well, she didn’t want the first two partridges, or the doves, maybe she’ll want a third partridge, two more doves and three chickens.

My True Love: They’re French hens.

Me: Really? You’re going to get pedantic now?

My True Love: I’m only trying to give you a nice Christmas.

Me: I had to put one of the pear trees in the bath. You didn’t give me a nice Christmas, you stole my baths.

My True Love: Sorry.

Day 4

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Is this Alzheimer’s? Do I need to take you to someone?

My True Love: What?

Me: Ten more birds. You’re giving me ten more birds.

My True Love: These four are colly birds!

Me: I don’t care! I didn’t want any birds, now I have twenty birds. And four pear trees. And it’s still not even Christmas.

My True Love: It’s the fourth day of Christmas.

Me: That’s not a thing!

Day 5

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Actually, today I got you something. It’s a restraining order. And this is Constable Christmas Pun, he’s going to escort you fifty feet away.

My True Love: So you don’t want these five gold rings?

A short pause follows.

Me: Sorry Constable, there’s been a mistake. Are these real gold?

My True Love: Yes!

Me: Ten more birds though? For real?

Day 6

My True Love: Merry Christmas.

Me: Back to birds I see. What is that, fifteen birds?

My True Love: Sixteen.

Me: And you’ve thrown some ducks into the mix.

My True Love: They’re geese.

Me: Oh, good, everyone’s favourite bird. Because what you really want in a bird is a beak full of teeth and wings that can break your arm. And I now have six of them. To go with the other forty birds you’ve given me. And what’s that they’re doing?

My True Love: Laying!

Me: So, you’ve given me an exponentially increasing number of geese.

My True Love: And five more rings.

Day 7

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: I see you’ve flooded my living room.

My True Love: So the swans could swim.

Me: You know what? It doesn’t actually matter that much, because I can’t get inside my flat any more due to the pear trees and the geese, which it turns out, are very protective of their eggs. I see there are now twelve of them. And more eggs.

My True Love: Should I flood the kitchen instead?

Me: Just give me my rings.

Day 8

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Who the hell are they?

My True Love: Maids!

Me: To clean up my apartment?

My True Love: To milk!

Me: I suppose that would explain the cows. Do I want to ask where you got eight human women to give to me as a gift?

My True Love: Probably not, no.

Day 9

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: What?!

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Speak up, I can’t hear you!

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Oh for God’s sake, stop drumming!

The drummers stop drumming.

Me: More live human beings? You thought, oh, she really loved those eight people trafficked women, I’ll give her another eight, and you know what, throw in nine drummers so she never has to go without a headache again.

My True Love: I was going to get you nine pianists, but I couldn’t find eighteen piano movers.

Day 10

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Ten drug addicts. Perfect.

My True Love: They’re pipers. Piping.

Me: They’re drug addicts.

Day 11

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Strippers today, is it?

My True Love: Ladies dancing.

Me: I’m not sure you can call someone who dances like that a lady. But thanks, I’m sure they’ll bring the customers into my drum and bass crack den milk bar aviary pear orchard. Although it’s actually pretty successful already. This close to Christmas, people will buy anything you put in their hands. And then they want to relax and forget all about it.

My True Love: Oh… Well… I suppose I’m glad so long as you’re enjoying my gifts. I see you’re wearing all my rings.

Me: They really make people take me seriously as a pimp.

Day 12 (AKA Christmas)

My True Love: Merry Christmas!

Me: Technically accurate for the first time. And what have you brought me this time?

My True Love: Twelve Lordes a leaping.

Me: You’ve cloned a teenage pop star, made her jump about for some reason, and given twelve of her to me like an object.

My True Love: Yes.

Me: Plus more geese and pear trees.

My True Love: And French hens.

Me: And human slaves.

My True Love: You don’t seem upset any more.

Me: Of course not. I’m now a very rich and powerful leader of the music, drugs, sex, fruit, paltry and dairy industry.

My True Love: Is that Constable Christmas Pun?

Me: He’s addicted to piping, now.

My True Love: Right… Well… I mean, it’s not quite what I intended, to turn you into a sort of crime lord pimp, but merry Christmas I suppose. I hope you’re ready for the twenty seven days of Boxing Day!



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