I Never Owned a Tamagotchi by Peter Faziani

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I Never Owned a Tamagotchi

In my childhood there was never a moment
I questioned my belief Santa Claus instead
I simply believed he didn’t stop on my roof.
I wondered whether he couldn’t find the stainless stove chimney pipe
slightly bent from age
or whether the moss that hid the peeling shingles
were just a risk he couldn’t take.

I never lay restless in bed
staring up at the ceiling
fighting sleep by justifying my wakefulness
as praying for those expensive gifts
any child of the 90s wanted
a Creepy Crawlers oven
a Game Boy Color.

Instead I was praying to hear sleigh bells
a reindeer cough
his sniffle
that guttural laugh as he landed 
on the neighbors rooftop
confirming that I’d simply done something wrong.

I’d spend each Christmas Eve secretly praying
that this is the year he’d come to my house.

I guess I always knew I was not on his naughty list
because I never had coal under the tree.

I just felt forgotten.

Peter Faziani

Peter Faziani is the general editor of Red Flag Poetry. His work has been published in The Collagist, Sandy River Review, Silver Birch Press, The Tau among others. He is a Michigander at heart living in Western Pennsylvania with his family and Corgis.