Christmas Eve Ghost Stories

Here are the poems that I used in the Christmas Eve Ghost stories video:

Haunt Me by Emily Bronte

Catherine, I miss you.  I lie here every night, missing you, the warmth of your touch, the melody of your sweet voice, the sounds that you make when you drift throughout the house.

Can you haunt me?  Haunt me tonight.

Catherine, I’ve done everything I know how to do.  I’ve cooked your favourite meal and I’ve set it on the table.  I’ve brewed your chamomile tea with milk, and just a little bit of sugar.  I’ve played your favourite songs from the discs in the player.  I’ve laid our wedding clothes on the top of the bed.  I’m so glad we kept them.  You used to dance down the halls, through the stairway, through the rooms, through every day.  How you could make this house come alive.

And now, some nights I wait for you.  I wait until I can’t wait any longer.  I walk the halls in the darkness, and the cold.  I rattle the door knobs and spin the chandelier, and open the closets and close them again, over, and over, listening to the creak of the hinges echoing throughout the house.  I leave the silverware scattered strangely across the counter top.  And I push the pieces over the edge to hear the clang on the tile.  I stop the pendulum of the grandfather clock with my fingers, holding it to one side, time standing still, until I decide to open my grasp.  I drag the chairs across the floor, and I turn them, tip them over, and then I return them to unusual places, where they have never been before.  I’ll go up to your portrait on the wall, and I’ll tilt it to the left, or to the right, leaving you askew- oddly comforting as you cock your head toward me as if asking me a question.  I do these things wanting it to be you.

I look around at the strange disrupted space, I pretend it’s you, but no matter how much I pretend, I know it isn’t you.

Haunt me, Catherine.  Please.  Haunt me.

Perhaps there is no greater ghost than loneliness- the empty bed, the empty chair, the empty room, the silence. 

Beyond this house I know no one, no one of consequence.  Certainly, no one who will sit and watch, listen and care, as you always did.

So much has been said and sung and written and preached about love.  But words?  Words do it so little justice.  How can words describe the swell in my heart when you would reach out to hold my hand as we walked along the sidewalks, as you leaned backward when I walked up behind you and I put my chin on your shoulder, and I would whisper in your ear, and I would kiss you on the cheek?  As you spoke no words, and yet said so much in the eye contact that we’d make from across the room?

You know my routines, and I knew yours.  You finished my sentences and I finished yours.  You shared my life and I shared yours.  No words could ever do this justice, and now that you’re gone it seems that words can’t even reach you at all.

Is there a ghost so frightening as loneliness.  I’ve been desperate, I admit.  I’ve clawed my fingernails into the wood.  I’ve yelled a frightening cry into every corner of this place.  I shattered mirrors, and then I took the shattered glass and swiped at my flesh and shed my blood upon the walls.  I’ve been so desperate, so cold, so empty.  Sometimes I didn’t even recognize myself.  I take no pride in this. 

We are not meant to live this way, to exist inside shells, talking only to ourselves, cheated of the gift of sharing the moments, the memories, the oxygen, the breeze and the sunlight, and the storms, the touch, and the laughter, and the sorrow, and the healing.  The times that we’d look at each other to make sure we’re the only ones, and in the sharing of those things, we become one with the moment. 

Yes Catherine, I don’t fear the world of the dead.  Not the phantom, the ghoul, the spirit, the ghost.  No, I don’t fear them.  Because I know, with my whole heart I know, that those things aren’t nearly as frightening, as a life without love, without touch, without warmth, without words, without someone.  More terrifying than rattles and clangs, and shrieks and crashing, and whispering and footsteps, and reflections in the corners of my eyes, more terrifying than any ghost, more terrifying than being haunted, is to never be haunted at all.

So haunt me, Catherine.  Haunt me tonight.  Catherine.  Catherine. Catherine.

The Ghost, by Richard Jones

I live in a house with no windows.  A black curtain hangs on my door.  The voices of conscience torment me.   

I live in a room with no floor.  There’s dirt in the corner I can’t see.  There’s water that runs down the wall. 

There are mice in the attic above me, and rats playing games in the hall.  I live in a house with no windows, and sleep in a house with no heat. 

The darkness of light that surrounds me keeps out the sounds of the street. 

I wake when the shadows have fallen, and walk when the memories cease-

when purpose in life has no meaning, and only the wicked find peace. 

Each night you sense that I’m by you.  You feel my breath as you sleep. 

You hear the faint creak of the floor boards, as out of the shadows I creep.  I live in a house with no windows.

 I live in a house that’s now yours.  It’s my voice you think that you’re hearing,

for I died in this room with no doors.

The Cremation of Sam McGee


There are strange things done in the midnight sun

      By the men who moil for gold;

The Arctic trails have their secret tales

      That would make your blood run cold;

The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,

      But the queerest they ever did see

Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge

      I cremated Sam McGee.

Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, where the cotton blooms and blows.

Why he left his home in the South to roam ’round the Pole, God only knows.

He was always cold, but the land of gold seemed to hold him like a spell;

Though he’d often say in his homely way that “he’d sooner live in hell.”

On a Christmas Day we were mushing our way over the Dawson trail.

Talk of your cold! through the parka’s fold it stabbed like a driven nail.

If our eyes we’d close, then the lashes froze till sometimes we couldn’t see;

It wasn’t much fun, but the only one to whimper was Sam McGee.

And that very night, as we lay packed tight in our robes beneath the snow,

And the dogs were fed, and the stars o’erhead were dancing heel and toe,

He turned to me, and “Cap,” says he, “I’ll cash in this trip, I guess;

And if I do, I’m asking that you won’t refuse my last request.”

Well, he seemed so low that I couldn’t say no; then he says with a sort of moan:

“It’s the cursèd cold, and it’s got right hold till I’m chilled clean through to the bone.

Yet ’tain’t being dead—it’s my awful dread of the icy grave that pains;

So I want you to swear that, foul or fair, you’ll cremate my last remains.”

A pal’s last need is a thing to heed, so I swore I would not fail;

And we started on at the streak of dawn; but God! he looked ghastly pale.

He crouched on the sleigh, and he raved all day of his home in Tennessee;

And before nightfall a corpse was all that was left of Sam McGee.

There wasn’t a breath in that land of death, and I hurried, horror-driven,

With a corpse half hid that I couldn’t get rid, because of a promise given;

It was lashed to the sleigh, and it seemed to say: “You may tax your brawn and brains,

But you promised true, and it’s up to you to cremate those last remains.”

Now a promise made is a debt unpaid, and the trail has its own stern code.

In the days to come, though my lips were dumb, in my heart how I cursed that load.

In the long, long night, by the lone firelight, while the huskies, round in a ring,

Howled out their woes to the homeless snows— O God! how I loathed the thing.

And every day that quiet clay seemed to heavy and heavier grow;

And on I went, though the dogs were spent and the grub was getting low;

The trail was bad, and I felt half mad, but I swore I would not give in;

And I’d often sing to the hateful thing, and it hearkened with a grin.

Till I came to the marge of Lake Lebarge, and a derelict there lay;

It was jammed in the ice, but I saw in a trice it was called the “Alice May.”

And I looked at it, and I thought a bit, and I looked at my frozen chum;

Then “Here,” said I, with a sudden cry, “is my cre-ma-tor-eum.”

Some planks I tore from the cabin floor, and I lit the boiler fire;

Some coal I found that was lying around, and I heaped the fuel higher;

The flames just soared, and the furnace roared—such a blaze you seldom see;

And I burrowed a hole in the glowing coal, and I stuffed in Sam McGee.

Then I made a hike, for I didn’t like to hear him sizzle so;

And the heavens scowled, and the huskies howled, and the wind began to blow.

It was icy cold, but the hot sweat rolled down my cheeks, and I don’t know why;

And the greasy smoke in an inky cloak went streaking down the sky.

I do not know how long in the snow I wrestled with grisly fear;

But the stars came out and they danced about ere again I ventured near;

I was sick with dread, but I bravely said: “I’ll just take a peep inside.

I guess he’s cooked, and it’s time I looked”; … then the door I opened wide.

And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm, in the heart of the furnace roar;

And he wore a smile you could see a mile, and he said: “Please close that door.

It’s fine in here, but I greatly fear you’ll let in the cold and storm—

Since I left Plumtree, down in Tennessee, it’s the first time I’ve been warm.”

There are strange things done in the midnight sun

      By the men who moil for gold;

The Arctic trails have their secret tales

      That would make your blood run cold;

The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,

      But the queerest they ever did see

Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge

      I cremated Sam McGee.


It was many and many a year ago,

   In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

   By the name of Annabel Lee;

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

   Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,

   In this kingdom by the sea,

But we loved with a love that was more than love—

   I and my Annabel Lee—

With a love that the wingèd seraphs of Heaven

   Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,

   In this kingdom by the sea,

A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling

   My beautiful Annabel Lee;

So that her highborn kinsmen came

   And bore her away from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre

   In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in Heaven,

   Went envying her and me—

Yes!—that was the reason (as all men know,

   In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud by night,

   Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love

   Of those who were older than we—

   Of many far wiser than we—

And neither the angels in Heaven above

   Nor the demons down under the sea

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul

   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams

   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes

   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side

   Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride,

   In her sepulchre there by the sea—

   In her tomb by the sounding sea.

Leave a Reply