Mary Ann Bane
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the Ranch,
Not a player was stirring, not even a tree branch;
The pickleballs were hung by the ping pong tables with care,
In hopes that the weather soon would be fair;
Club members were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of new paddles danced in their heads;
My alarm sounded early and the weather looked great,
I left in the dark because I just couldn’t wait;
Away to the Cimmaron in my golf cart with brights,
I opened the switch box and turned on the lights;
In the wee morning hours, the court lights cast a glow,
Making it look almost like midday on the 16 courts below;
When what to my wondering eyes did appear,
But a procession of players arriving with gear;
One in particular seemed the liveliest of men,
I knew in a moment it must be our Prez – Ken;
More rapid than eagles his board members they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
“Now, Marilyn! Now Mark, now Bob and Dee!
On Spike! On Cheryl! And all on a committee!
From the top of the patio with no time to stall,
Now play away! play away! play away all!”
So down to the courts those athletes they flew,
With paddles, and balls, and hydration bottles, too;
The players took a little time to time to warm up properly,
Some stretching, some dinking, and a few serves naturally;
Anxious to start, “zero-zero-two” was the call,
Followed by the clicking and clacking of each little ball.
Their eyes—how they twinkled! Their fun, how merry!
Their cheeks were like roses, their noses a bit scary!
Their mouths were drawn up showing off their smiles,
I’ll bet the fun on the courts could be heard for miles;
The handles of their paddles they held in their grips,
As they hoped to avoid a case of the serving yips;
Successful serves returned deep just as you might have thought,
This will require a third shot from several types we’ve been taught;
Maybe a drive, maybe a lob, but we know most often it should be a drop,
So let’s land it in the kitchen because we really need a stop!
That drop was no match for worthy opponents all now at the net,
What can you say except “Wow, that was a great get”;
A soft game has ensued dink upon dink;
Who will prevail is a matter of patience I think;
The time went by quickly and there were many a volley,
But their weary bones and muscles are not feeling so jolly;
They know it’s that time, so with reluctance they will go,
To rest and recover and return tomorrow!
But I heard them exclaim as they drove out of sight—
“Merry Christmas y’all and have a good night!”
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