Edited by: HappyJackal
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters in this work and all “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” characters belong to Hasbro.
I started the day with an uncomfortable meeting
‘cause our landlord decided to cut off the heating,
And since our rent notices made a small tower
I was relieved he didn’t cut all the power.
My father, in his immeasurable wisdom,
Created, for me, a foolproof system.
I was to look poor, hungry, deranged,
And beg on the streets for dollars and change.
“Son, it’s about time you made a living.
Lucky for you, it’s the season of giving.
Now go out into the Christmas crowd.
Earn some money and make daddy proud.”
His fingers were busy massaging his brain
Probably because he had a killer migraine.
His eyes were shut tight, I knew this display.
It meant, “Just… don’t argue and do what I say.”
As was his custom, he went drinking last night;
Got himself wasted and into a fight.
I knew this because his face was a mess,
And also because he had never undressed.
When he got home last night, he was shouting and swearing.
He woke me up whilst loudly declaring,
“Shtupid drunks, what do dey know?
dey should go to Vegas if dey got money to blow.”
I used my bed sheet to drown out the racket.
My bed sheet being my dad’s dirty jacket.
And my bed was just a dusty, old cot
I salvaged from the apartment’s back lot.
“Ish cold as hell in here. Where’s my coat?”
He slurred hoarsely with a damaged throat.
My bedchamber doubled as a laundry room,
So checking in there would spell out my doom.
“Git yer lazy butt up, you shtupid brat!”
He angrily grumbled and on me he spat.
I didn’t budge ‘cause I was tired and pissed
So he started kicking me as a way to insist.
He took his jacket from me, collapsed on his bed,
And immediately passed out; leaving me cold instead.
I shivered in a ball, hurt and disgusted;
Wondering why the radiator was busted.
My father never apologized for being a brute.
He probably doesn’t remember, to tell you the truth.
But when he is sober, he’s not that bad.
Just a lazy, jobless, disappointing dad.
Armed with a sign and a used can of beans
And dressed with a quilt and raggedy jeans,
I began my trek to the local bus stop.
Picked up from the slum and in the city, I’ll drop.
On the bus, I had time to contemplate
If my life was something I could consummate.
But then I realized that my only goal
Was not something a mere child could control.
My family was poor for one simple reason:
My alcoholic dad never had a dry season.
He’d work at the bars and consume all the cash
He got from mopping and taking care of the trash.
“Working for liquid gold,” he’d say with a smile
As I licked the crumbs off the kitchen tile.
(Okay, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration,
But I was sick of my meals being from a gas station.)
So it was left to me, a nine year old child
To make lots money and keep my dad mild,
‘Cause if there’s anything worse than avid hunger
It’s a loved one tearing your face asunder.
The bus finally stopped at the shopping square,
So I got up to pay the driver my fare.
I ended up being a few dollars short
So the driver made a forced deport.
“It’s homeless kids like you that ruin Christmas.
You expect free things from every single business.”
How was I supposed to know you had to pay first?
The driver shoved me off saying, “Kid, you’re the worst.”
He told me as long as he’s driving this bus
my face would be one drivers would never trust.
It’s safe to say I was walking home,
But that’s okay; it gave me time to roam.
I’d never even seen this part of the city
‘Cause I wasn’t exactly in the Rich-Kids committee.
There were bakeries and clothing stores galore,
shops that sold goods I had no clue what for.
It was still early so the shops were empty
But as time went on, there were shoppers aplenty.
I was getting weird looks and people started to glare,
So I decided it was high time I settled somewhere.
I set up shop in front of a small toy store;
Hoping there were toys that I could score.
And once I got a peek at the shop’s contents
I scribbled ‘Wil Tak Mony + Cool Presnts.’
Minutes turned into hours, with not much charity.
The cold was sucking out all my dexterity.
The quilt I had brought, though rather broad,
Its protection from the wind had been a facade.
I watched countless families come and go;
Parents with their happy children in tow.
They’d exit gaily with robots and dolls,
With motorized trains and bouncy balls.
After a while, I couldn’t bear to watch.
I hung my head and stared at my crotch.
While other kids were getting free toys today,
I had to rely on generosity’s sway.
I spent the next hour with my eyes closed;
Shut my ears to keep my emotions composed.
If I hear one more child scream out in mirth,
I’ll lose it and leave this godforsaken Earth.
I ground my teeth and tightened my eyes,
So much so that I started to cry.
I tried to stop, but once the ball’s rolling
The stress of my life begins its controlling.
As if someone had heard my spiritual plea
I felt something land in my lap suddenly.
I looked up to see a man and his wife,
And the girliest thing I’ve ever seen in my life.
To my surprise, the girl looked distraught.
She confronted him saying, “Hey, I bought
This gift for you and you’re giving it away?”
She pouted and sulked, making quite the display.
The man just laughed and replied, “Oh hush.
I have tons of these things, what’s one more plush?
Besides, isn’t this what Christmas is all about?
And it looks to me that he’ll need her, no doubt.”
I was speechless, amazed at what had occurred.
Even though the gift was kind of absurd,
I’d never gotten anything on December twenty-fifths
My family had always been too poor for gifts.
The man rubbed my head and gave me a grin
He said, “Hey, cheer up! Lift up that chin!
I know this Christmas present is pretty strange,
But it looks like you need a little love for a change.”
As they walked away, I took a peek at my loot.
I had eighty dollars and a present to boot.
It was getting late, and I had a long walk,
So I bushed myself off and ran down the block.
The moon seemed to rise all too quickly;
The freezing temperature was making me sickly.
I had ditched the quilt a long time ago
‘cause it was harder to hold than buttery dough.
Not to mention my present was really stout.
It was half my size from tail to snout.
As my legs grew tired and I started to slow
I found myself not knowing which way to go.
I was utterly alone in the dead of night;
Visions of kidnapping giving me fright.
The streets were deserted, save for a few
People who had no homes to go to.
I took this time to sit on a bench
Next to a woman that gave off a stench.
She was coughing a lot and was wearing a hood,
So I scooted away, as far as I could.
I rested my legs and examined my prize.
A silver white pony with dazzling eyes.
Its hair reminded me of Italian ice;
This thing must have charged for a hefty price.
The object was supple and soft to the touch.
Its limp appendages made it easy to clutch.
The tag read ‘My Little Pony: Princess Celestia
The kind and gentle ruler of Equestria.’
It had wings like a bird and a horn on its head
Its eyes were in between purple and red.
And as I stared into those magenta beads
I saw a small twinkle and planted the seeds.
Suddenly, the woman snatched up my arm
And calmly said, “Now, don’t be alarmed,
But a child like you shouldn’t be out this late.
Trouble’s the only thing you’re bound to create.”
She suddenly asked, “Now where’s your mama?
She must be worried sick about you and this drama.”
She was really scary and so demanding
I began to cry from all her commanding.
I wriggled away, and picked up my stuff;
I didn’t know her, so I had to rebuff.
I apologized softly and from her I sprinted,
And tried to get home before I got winded.
It took me a while, but I found our apartment
As I heard sirens from the police department.
I hoped silently that my dumb pops
Didn’t get worried and involve the cops.
But when I entered and turned on the light.
He was not in the den, he was nowhere in sight.
His bedroom door was shut and was locked
He was totally fine and I was totally shocked.
I’d think a good father would worry a little
Show signs of care, some kind of committal,
But not my dad, oh no, not him.
His life was governed by the phrase ‘on a whim.’
In fact, it wasn’t his nature to plan ahead;
About future meals or if his son’s dead.
If I wasn’t alive, it would be better
‘Cause then he would be less of a debtor.
I shook my head to dispel all these thoughts
And gripped my heart to untangle the knots.
I threw down my stuff and quickly stripped,
And crept to the bathtub for a quick dip.
We usually take one shower a week
And usually I end up just using the creek,
But it’s freezing outside and I had a long day.
A cold shower would be relatively warm anyway.
Five minutes later I was fresh as a daisy
Though the day’s excitement made me quite lazy.
I slipped on my pajamas, shut my door,
And collapsed in a heap on the cold floor.
I rolled on my back and stared at the ceiling
Unable to shake off an unsettled feeling.
I’ve been so preoccupied with my father
That I didn’t think to ask, “Where is my mother?”
Most families are run and led by a team,
A man and a woman, a protective stream
Of love and kindness for the child they bare.
Tribulations are not fought alone, but shared.
So why did my mom choose to pack up and leave?
Our family needed drive, something to achieve.
Without it, my dad would continue to drink.
Likewise, my sanity would continue to shrink.
No, this is bad, this is not good
A home without love is misunderstood
‘Cause without it, you’ll end up looking in vain
Like wandering through fog or blinding rain.
And what is a child without loving support?
Not’ but a puppet which you can extort.
My bond with my father is a disaster
In which I’m controlled by the puppet master.
I rolled over to see the doll in my face.
I picked it up and the plush I embraced.
I knew for a fact that it was pretend,
But still I whimpered, “I need a friend.”
Just then, the horn started to shimmer.
The brilliant light made the whole body glimmer.
And as I stumbled away from the doll
The light made it hard to see anything at all.
After a few seconds, the light grew dim
I peeked through my hands and spotted a limb.
My mouth gaped when I looked up at the muzzle
Of a giant horse who seemed rather puzzled.
I stared at the beast, frozen in place.
The room seemed dwarfed as it took all the space.
Wings outspread and its horn aglow
It looked left and right; above and below.
Finally, its eyes locked onto mine.
I could only take that as a bad sign.
It walked up to me and I shut my eyes.
The fear I displayed, I could not disguise.
Suddenly, something nudged at my chin.
Its warm nose made goose bumps all over my skin.
My muscles relaxed and my eyes emerged;
It’s as if her touch made my terrors be purged.
I was face to face with the most beautiful mare.
From her glittering pelt to her ever-flowing hair,
Her body gleamed with an unnatural glow
And out of this body, a warmth seemed to flow.
She smiled down at me with a knowing expression
But then declared, “Sorry, I have a confession.
You may be wondering why I am here,
Or why I have chosen this time to appear.
But I cannot tell you anything yet;
If you knew, your future would be unset.
The only things I can tell you now
Is that I’m here to help you with that cow.”
She jerked her head toward my old man,
And before my assault of questions began,
She plopped on top of my dusty cushion,
And before I knew it, her I was pushin’.
My efforts, sadly, had no effect.
She seemed not to notice my bed that she wrecked.
“It’s best if I stay where I will not be seen
Though, your room is quite cramped and not very clean.”
With that, I stormed out and laid on the couch.
I couldn’t care less if I was being a grouch.
She’s not a bad creature, it’s safe to assume,
But it sucks that she just took over my room.
Dealing with my dad, she said she’d accede
But right now she’s just another mouth to feed.
The thought of going hungry made me quite miffed,
And I started to regret ever getting the gift.
The next morning, my father shook me awake
Asking how much money I was able to make.
Groggily, I mumbled, “I only got eighty.
And was chased all over town by a homeless lady.”
Although I had lied, I wanted to see
Whether my dad would show signs of worry.
But he kept his silence and just looked forlorn.
His sadness caused by the lack of money I’d borne.
Rubbing his temples, he said he was going
To find a way to deal with the money we’re owing.
Before he departed, he gave me a look
Of pure regret and his head he shook.
Once he had left and was finally gone,
I walked to my room while stifling a yawn.
As I went to open the door, it was locked.
Pissed and confused, I angrily knocked.
Without warning, the door swung wide,
And a wall of white fur, my face did collide.
I was about to fall down when I got a quick boost
And was covered in light that her horn produced.
Before I knew it, I was in the air
Levitated by the magic of the giant mare.
“Good morning little one,” she said, beaming,
As I tried to keep myself from screaming.
She seemed to notice my terrified frown,
And finally decided to put me down.
I shook my head to dispel my daze
I would have been angry if I weren’t so amazed.
She trotted to the kitchen for something to eat
And I hoped she wouldn’t find all of my treats.
Sadly she did, she found my last Reese’s.
She finished them off, leaving me no pieces.
I demanded to know why I was locked out
And what her “invasion” was all about.
“I apologize for the blatant intrusion,
But the lock is simply for paternal occlusion.
I was sent here because I received your call.
Between our worlds, there lies only a wall,
And there are those from both worlds who are able to scale it
And those, like me, who like to avail it.”
I didn’t understand a word that she said
But she didn’t seem like one who wanted me dead.
I hurried to her side as she started to slouch
And helped her with the straw of a Capri Sun pouch.
She thanked me kindly and took small sips
As I went to the pantry for potato chips.
When I came back, she was covered in juice.
“Sorry,” she said, “for being obtuse.”
I couldn’t help but laugh at the regal queen.
For a pony so wise, so smart and so keen,
She was foiled so easily by a small drink,
And as I giggled, she was turning pink.
After I helped her dry herself off
I felt really bad and started to cough.
The cough wouldn’t stop, I got on my knees,
My breath was uneven, I started to wheeze.
My head was pounding and the world started spinning.
I was lying on the ground when my vision started thinning.
The last thing I saw before I passed out
Was Princess Celestia’s worried snout.
I awoke to the sound of a hard knock
And the hazy image of my dad’s socks
He stood over me with his hands on his hips
The light from the ceiling, he seemed to eclipse.
“Have you been eating most of the food?”
I could tell he was in a terrible mood,
But my head felt like it was covered in flames;
It hurt just thinking about his claims.
“Maybe,” I wheezed, “I’m a growing boy.”
My throat felt like it was completely destroyed.
I realized that the food shortage trend
Was caused by a being I had to defend.
“We can’t afford this kind of expense.
Next time, try to use a little common sense.”
After that, he promptly left, slamming the door;
Somehow oblivious to his sickly son on the floor.
I tried to sit up, but my body said no
But that’s okay, I had nowhere to go.
I looked at the dryer and coughed a few times.
I needed to make her fess up to her crimes.
A few seconds later, out popped a head.
A tiny, cute figure made of dye and thread.
The gift I received moved on its own
Like a possessed effigy or mind controlled drone.
I shut my eyes ‘cause my head started pounding,
But mostly because of the light surrounding
The doll as it grew and changed its form.
The light from the horse felt gentle and warm.
The first thing she did was check on my status,
Then she used her magic as a locking apparatus.
My room was secure, so her horn started glowing,
And she enveloped me in warmth overflowing.
“I had to hide in that machine,” she explained,
“So my obscurity in this home would be maintained.”
I told her that hiding in the dryer isn’t safe
And that if it’s turned on, her body might chafe.
“It’s alright, that form is merely a shrine.
It helps bridge the gap between your world and mine.
In the unfortunate chance that something mauls it,
My physical body, no harm will befall it.”
I continued by asking why I was sick
And what she was doing with her magic.
“You were out in the freezing cold for so long
That you contracted a virus that is very strong.
My magic is acting as a symptom reliever
To help you with chills that come from your fever.”
Finally, to make my series of questions complete,
I asked, “Princess, how much of our food did you eat?”
“Well, I ate the bag of chips with some cheese fondue,
And then I made soup for me and for you.
I do apologize for not asking in advance
But to eat, your father’s absence is my only chance.”
Her horn glowed gold and out of nowhere
Two bowls of soup appeared from thin air.
I was still having trouble sitting upright,
So her gentile hoof helped me with my plight.
As I sipped soup, she told me great tales
Of the world she came from, and spared no details.
Of pastel ponies and powerful foes;
How she and her sister, into power they rose.
Every few seconds, I’d ask a question
Which, in turn, would lead to another digression.
I learned so much about Equestria, ponies,
Her daily routines and seasonal ceremonies.
Hours flew by and my endurance was fading
Detecting this, the Princess started persuading
Me to take it easy and sleep for a bit.
“I don’t want you to have another coughing fit.”
Before I fell asleep, I thanked her kindly
For my dad’s helping hand wasn’t very likely.
“By the time I am through with that bumbling buffoon,
His pride will pop like an overfilled balloon.”
Our income problem was not improving
Nor was my sickness anymore soothing.
My dad, though reluctantly, stuck out his neck,
And filed for the TANF welfare check.
Although that check had helped our family a ton,
the amount of mouths to feed still went up by one.
And Princess Celestia made our troubles worsen
Because she ate twice as much as any one person.
Though, I couldn’t blame her, she was very tall
And she needed energy to keep my illness forestalled.
She told me that I had a bad case of the flu,
But I had no insurance to cover hospital dues.
Days turned to weeks and I slowly got better
And one day, the Princess appeared with a sweater.
She said that a friend of hers heard my story
And made this with spares from her inventory.
It was sky blue and the texture was fluffy.
The fabric was breathable; not at all stuffy.
In the middle of the chest was a jewel-studded feather
It was outlined with rubies seemingly melded together.
At first, the heat of embarrassment covered my cheeks
And I marveled at the item formed from pony techniques.
But as I admired its awesome grandeur,
I asked, “What does this feather in the middle stand for?”
“It is a feather plucked from a magical bird.
A creature whose life remains undeterred.
For when it has reached the end of its days
Its body bursts into fires ablaze.
But out of the ashes a new life is born
And the phoenix lives on to see the next morn.”
I stared in amazement at the great treasure,
And I gave her a big hug to display my pleasure.
I asked her how her friends knew about me,
And if she needed to go back home without me.
“I send letters to my pupil through the dimensional void,
And I needed a break from the job of which I’m employed.
My sister, Luna, is a capable mare.
She can lead just fine, without any snares.”
I got excited when she mentioned the dimensional mail,
And inquired what each of their letters entailed.
“Just reports that get sent through her companion, Spike.”
Then she added, “You can send one too if you like.”
“I’d love to Princess, but there’s just one catch:
Everything I write looks like a bunch of chicken scratch.
I’ve never gone to school or even enrolled
My dad hasn’t cared much for long term goals.”
I couldn’t help but appear very downtrodden
‘cause my intellect has never had a chance to be broadened.
“Well, I’m not going anywhere anytime soon.
How about I teach you every afternoon?”
My eyes brightened and my smile grew wide.
“I think I’d love you forever!” I happily replied.
The cold winter months rolled over to spring;
everyday being spent with Celestia studying.
After some time, a schedule was made:
In the morning, I learned; in the evening, we played.
I started the days off by slipping her breakfast
Trying not to draw attention or be very reckless.
Then while we munched on, say, a Poptart
We’d pull out some paper and the lessons would start.
We began with simple orthographical drills
Like proper case practice and basic spelling skills.
Then we’d move on to punctuation and grammar
Which would make me trip up and I’d frequently stammer.
We’d finish each lesson with a practice piece.
I would just free-write until she told me to cease.
After I was done, she would read it aloud,
And mend my flaws bluntly but nonetheless proud.
Her instructions were strict and her principles firm,
But she would always compliment me on how fast I had learned.
And once my language skills had been notably enhanced,
I asked to write letters and she gave me a chance.
At first I just tacked on a few lines at the end
Of each of the Princess’s replies that she’d send.
The first thing I did was thank Rarity
For the sweater that she made and her kind charity
A few days later, we received her response;
An elegant letter covered it nonchalance.
I couldn’t really read much of the fancy cursive
But the Princess said the majority of it was fairly discursive.
“The point,” she concluded, “Is that she’s thrilled
That you liked the present that she carefully built.”
That pony must get lots of praise from her pals
‘cause Rarity seems like a very generous gal.
News about my letters started to buzz.
The ponies of Equestria were as excited as I was.
And suddenly, as if out of the blue,
The letters we received substantially grew.
One pony wrote how he was completely amazed
That the Princess had gone all this time unfazed.
Another wanted to know more about these lands,
And still another seemed weirdly obsessed with my hands.
I always looked forward to cards from Applejack
‘cause they were always accompanied by a tasty snack.
And Fluttershy’s letters were really cute
‘cause they came with a colored picture to boot.
Although the letters were great and sometimes bizarre,
The real fun began when dad left for the bar.
As soon as he was gone, we didn’t delay.
We’d burst out of my room and began to play.
Celestia would take time to stretch out her wings
While I figured out what to do with all the breakable things.
Then together, we’d go and try to fix dinner.
Though, I couldn’t help much since I was a beginner.
After an almost always spectacular meal
I’d pull out the cards and start to deal.
My dad, being the mild gambler he was,
Taught me a few card games, just because.
We’d play Texas Hold ‘Um and Five Card Draw,
Blackjack, Speed, Spoons, and Maw.
If we didn’t feel like playing cards that night
We’d do whatever we want, more than I can write.
Many nights were spent pranking the people next door
And one night we messed with my dad’s sock drawer.
Sometimes we’d curl up and watch some T.V.
The Princess was convinced it was a dimensional key.
If the Princess was up to it, we’d run around the rooms
And let our imagination loose whilst donning costumes.
I always loved wearing my pirate outfit
‘cause I couldn’t swashbuckle anything without it!
Those nights were my fondest memories by far.
And before my dad got back from the local bar,
We’d get back in my room and lay on my cot,
And I usually passed out from all the havoc we wrought.
But before that, she made me go brush my teeth.
Then I’d slip on my sweater and go underneath
Her outstretched wings, soft but sublime,
And we’d sleep side by side, her head on mine.
As the heat waves moved in and summer began,
Celestia approached me with a bold new plan.
“I think you should try the begging scene once more,
For I have an idea that will be hard to ignore.”
At first, I thought it was completely hopeless;
Recalling back to when I feigned being homeless.
But as Princess Celestia told me her plan
I found myself back on the city streets again.
The Princess had decided to go in doll form
As I searched for a good spot for people to swarm.
I found myself in the plaza of the local strip mall,
And sat with my back against the fountain wall.
I placed her on the ground and propped my sign up
Which read, “MAGIC DOLL DANCE. Put Money In Cup.”
Then, when I finally caught the crowd’s sight
I nodded at the plush and gave her the green light.
Suddenly, the stuffed animal started to move
And I tried to beatbox to give her some groove.
It stood on its hind legs, took a readied stance,
And then wiggled around doing some sort of break-dance.
From the embarrassed-looking parents to the laughing teens;
It was safe to say this show wasn’t the best that they’ve seen.
It took every ounce of my own self-control
To keep myself from laughing at the cute foal.
As Princess Celestia would twist and spin
Money began falling into my bin.
It seems with my noise-making and her tumbling,
The crowd appeared to get all the more humbling.
Playing to the crowd, I got onto my feet
And started moving to my own created beat.
I felt like a fool as the people shrieked,
Their laughter, it seems, had finally peaked.
After a few minutes, we gave it a rest.
The gathering of people seemed thoroughly impressed.
They whooped and cheered at our ragtag show,
And willingly coughed up most of their dough.
People came up to me in amazement and awe
While others just stood, hanging their loose jaws.
Still others asked me if they could examine my craft.
They tried to find magnets or stings and a shaft.
The Princess stayed lifeless as I reaped our reward
And into a shoebox, the money I poured.
I waited thirty minutes for the crowd to renew
And a few minutes later, we were up for round two.
Camcorders appeared and phones flipped and flashed
As I tried to keep my composure and my face unabashed.
We continued our gig until midday,
When the sun made it too hot for us stay.
That’s when a guy approached me saying,
“Hey! I saw y’all swingin’ and swayin’
And I’m not gonna lie, you pretty much rule.
The way you make that doll move is really cool.
Now, I don’t know if this has already been mentioned,
But are you two attending the brony convention?”
I didn’t really know him, and I was bad with strangers.
Strangers came bearing tricks and all of their dangers.
He was kind of frightening, ‘cause he looked like a perv
Due to the girly shirt and the presence he served.
So I bowed my head and stared at my shoes;
Hoping that abduction wasn’t something he’d choose.
“That’s weird; I didn’t take you to be the shy type.
Well, if you don’t want to talk to me, I won’t gripe,
But here, take my flyer, I don’t really need it,
And make sure you go online and get a hold of a ticket.”
With that, he sauntered off; hands in his pockets,
As I scanned the flyer with wide eye sockets.
Everything on the page seemed unimportant and little
‘Cause Celestia was right smack dab in the middle.
Just then, I felt something nudge at my knee.
I looked down to see the face of the cute plushie.
I gathered all my things in a carry-on sack,
Scooped up the Princess and headed on back.
“In Equestria, the heat never gets to this state;
Where the sun makes it easy to dehydrate,”
Telepathically complaining as she climbed on my shoulder.
“No doubt, if I could, I would make it colder.”
I was sweltering in the middle of an industrial glade,
So, I ducked in a back alley for the refreshing shade.
I whistled a carefree tune as I gleefully tread,
While the Princess migrated to the top of my head.
All of a sudden, a ragged man appeared.
He wore a crusty jacket and a scraggly beard.
His pants were all torn and he was twice my size.
I could tell he was crazy from the look in his eyes.
“Hey kid, I saw you sweepin’ in all that cash.
Hows about you gimmie a peek at that huge money stash.”
I took a step back and fearfully declined,
But he started shuffling toward me, his stride unrefined.
“Come on! A kid like you doesn’t need that money.
Hand it over here to your Uncle Mack, sonny.”
I clutched the straps of my bag and I started to stagger
As the man licked his lips and pulled out his dagger.
Without warning, my noggin started to burn
And something on my head started to churn.
I quickly threw the doll at the man who was naughty,
So the Princess wouldn’t transform on top of my body.
The doll landed a few feet in front of the creep,
And the light from the object continued to seep;
Until every corner of the alley was covered,
And the brilliant glow had him completely smothered.
“You will not lay a hand on this young boy,”
The Princess commanded, and to my great joy
The man fell down, confused and confined,
“What? Who is that? Why am I blind?!”
Her horn had lit up and flashed in his face;
A light so powerful, it acted like mace.
She immediately changed back into doll shape,
And I swiftly completed our daring escape.
Back at home, I happily jumped all around
As the Princess counted our big money mound.
“That was amazing! You saved my life!
You totally owned that guy and his knife,”
She turned toward me and gave me a smirk
“Truthfully, I did not know it would work,
But it seems bright light has a blinding effect
On the retinas of humans. He should get them checked.”
I laughed and took a seat right next to her,
And rested my head on her glossy smooth fur.
Her heartbeat was soothing in its rhythmic thump,
And I knew it was life that was being pumped.
“So, I added up the numbers on these bank notes
And with all this money, we could buy tons of oats.
Though I may need to count one more time
The total I got was two hundred and five.”
We shifted out gazes between the money and each other,
Astounded by the amount we pooled with one another.
After a moment, the Princess gave her assessment,
“I feel that oats would be a sound investment.”
At that, we burst out in heartfelt laughter
And suddenly, I heard my dad come home thereafter.
I asked the Princess if I should show my dad.
“With the amount we’ve procured, he can only be glad.”
She nudged me onward as I picked up the stacks,
And confronted my pop and his newly acquired six-packs.
He was at the fridge putting up the beer he retrieved,
So I walked up beside him and tugged on his sleeve.
“Huh? What do you want? What’s that in your hand?”
When he spotted the money, I watched his eyes expand.
He snatched up the bills and stared for a moment.
I’m sure he thought that this was his final atonement.
“You didn’t steal this money… or scam someone right?”
He asked. His face: a mixture of excitement and fright.
I told him that I got the money while begging on the streets,
And that the money came from both the middle class and the elites.
“That’s my boy! I mean... this is... wow…
I’ll have a much easier time paying for bills now.”
He reached for his wallet on the kitchen table,
But fumbled it since his balance was slightly unstable.
It hit the ground in front of me and flipped open,
And revealed a picture of a beautiful woman.
I picked up the wallet and hesitatingly asked,
“Dad… Is this a picture of mom from the past?”
He seized his wallet, his face looked disturbed,
And his demeanor was one that was fully perturbed.
Then, my dad sighed and pinched the top of his nose,
And said, “You earned the right to hear the story, I suppose.”
He pulled up two chairs and we both sat down,
And he began his story with one simple noun.
“Mother. Well, actually the girl in the picture
Is not your mom but, in fact, my sister.
Your mom was… well, how do I say it?
She couldn’t keep her love secret, she had to display it.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved that woman to death
But she was as ruthless as Lady Macbeth.
Right after our marriage, we stuck like glue,
But everything changed after she had you.
I caught her with other men on several occasions
Her promiscuity was subject to many fluctuations.
But what astounded me the most was not her cheating,
But that, when I had caught her, she didn’t stop repeating.
She started hating me too. Oh man, it was bad.
She called me a horrible husband and disgusting dad.
One night, when you were about two years old,
I got home from work and the house had been sold.
She had taken all my things into the vast unknown,
Everything but you. She left you all alone.”
Then he grabbed my shoulders, firm and determined.
His face was full of emotion and his eyes were very certain.
“Son, no matter what, no matter the day,
I will always be here, I will always stay.
I’m man enough to admit I’m not the best father,
And these past months, you’ve done a lot not to bother
Me, which is fine, but I want you know
That I’ll be by your side wherever you go.”
I sat there dazed and nodded silently;
Walked back to my room and closed the door behind me.
My expression was frozen as the Princess came over
And asked what had happened with “that late-night rover.”
I told her the entirety of the story I heard
Which came out of my mouth disgruntled and slurred.
Throughout the narrative, she nodded and blinked.
Then she gave her opinion, brief and succinct.
“Well, he seems to be shaping into a better man.
He is slowly becoming a being that I can stand,
But, about you mother; she is a vile creature.
I do not think any kind of virtue can reach her.
That being said, how are you feeling?
I am sure you are doleful after that revealing.”
But to her surprise, I shook my head.
And smiled up at her, grinning instead.
“Ya know, that’s what was weirding me out:
That my mom… well, I don’t really care about.
‘Cause, to me, she just a girl that I never knew,
And the mom of my dreams ended up being… you.”
At that, she seemed slightly taken off guard,
But then her face softened and tears flowed unbarred.
Her hooves scooped me up and she clutched me tight
While I tried not to be smothered by her remarkable might.
Relations with my father slowly improved
As we continued to beg, and he totally approved.
He was happy to take the money I gained off my hands,
Oblivious to the extra dough I saved for my own plans.
Though my father was up to his neck in greed,
He still provided me with everything I would need.
And every night before I went to my bed
He’d tell me he loved me and pat my small head.
The Princess insisted we attend the brony convention,
Which boasted greatness, but reeked of pretention.
Still, they were people that were fans of the Princess,
But their conspicuous adoration left me in distress.
It was weird how the majority of expected guests
Were full grown adults, as the flyer suggests.
I really hoped that the attendees weren’t over eighteen
‘Cause my track record with adults wasn’t exactly pristine.
But I owe Princess Celestia at least this much,
For saving me and for being my emotional crutch.
I don’t think I’ll ever be able to repay her,
But I tried my best as a friend and a purveyor.
The extra money we kept usually went into sweets:
Candies and pastries, soft and hard treats.
But then we realized that money had to be used
To get into the convention center unexcused.
So, when the day of the event finally arrived
We scraped up some change, hoping we’d survive,
And get past the door man without much fuss.
Though, I had a feeling it would mirror what had happened on the bus.
Before we left, she made me go take a shower
“Be sure the dirt on your face is completely scoured.”
When I finally got myself so fresh and so clean
She gave me the fanciest clothes I’ve ever seen.
“I found this little suit in a box over there.
You would look great once I combed your hair.”
She levitated it toward me, but I pushed it away
I couldn’t help but grin as I rudely disobeyed.
“Aw, come on Ma! This ain’t the right setting
We’re going to a con, not a frickin’ wedding.
Besides, being fancy just isn’t my style.
The only thing pretty about me is my smile.”
We snickered as the Princess started to compress
And she transformed into a doll that, somehow, had a dress.
I slipped on some cargo shorts and my cleanest tee
And I started our trek; strutting happily.
The voyage was a cinch ‘cause on every light post
There were signs and arrows telling cars where to coast.
And the convention complex was easy to sight
‘cause there was a line of people winding down and to the right.
I awkwardly stepped into the ever lengthening line
And waited for my turn to give them what is mine:
Our money, which was not even close to enough,
But I was hoping they’d see me and wouldn’t be all that rough.
When I got to the ticket man, I laid down my cash,
And crossed my fingers as my emotions clashed.
After reluctantly counting all of my cents
He said, “Kid, you must be some kind of dense.
There isn’t even enough money here for half a pass.”
So I pouted and made my eyes like shimmering glass.
“Please mister, just this once, let me through.
You’d be helping a homeless child if you do.”
“Yeah I bet. Now get outa here before I call your folks.
I don’t have time for children and their silly jokes.”
He put the money in the bag and shoved it into my chest
And I was pushed out of line before I had a chance to protest.
I was about to give up when I felt a hand on my back
And I turned to see a man dressed in all black.
“Hey Charlie, come here for a sec,” he said poker-faced.
They whispered their discussion as I anxiously paced.
Finally, they finished and the man in black laughed,
And came over to me saying, “Sorry, we’re short staffed,
And all the hype is making my crew a little antsy
Even I’m on the edge, and I’m dressed super fancy!”
I was stunned. Where was this generosity coming from?
When he gave me some candy, I couldn’t help but feel dumb
As we walked down the hallway, he gave me a look,
Then he walked ahead of me and my hand, he shook.
“It’s been quite some time, but look how you’ve grown.
I see you’ve taken my gift and made it your own.”
He pointed at the Princess, who I clutched to my chest.
“Though, I don’t remember it ever having a dress.”
Sudden realization hit me like a flying brick
And I silently scolded myself for being so thick.
The man who was clearly running this show
Was none other than Christmas-Present-Joe Blow.
I brightened up and asked him how he was doing.
“Pretty good. This summer, me and my wife went canoeing.
But, we’ll catch up later; I got a con to run
I’ll see ya later.” And around he spun.
I was heading for the bathroom when I heard, “Wait a sec!”
He ran back to me and put his pass around my neck.
“There, now my crew won’t even begin to think
About kicking you out,” he said with a wink.
I was about to thank him for all that he’s done,
But he bolted away, like a bullet out a gun.
And before I knew it, I was on the show floor
Which contained booths upon booths of ponies galore.
There were figurines, plushies, wristbands, art,
Hoodies and hats, and that’s just a start.
Each booth seemed tailored to a specific taste.
From fan-made books to dresses with lace.
There were huge lines in front of people that I didn’t know.
I discovered later they were actually VAs from the show.
And somehow I found myself in a massive crowd
With a DJ above them blasting music quite loud.
The people here seemed like fun-loving loons
Dressed as colorful characters from the same cartoon.
Some were even dressed as the Princess herself,
Though their costume designs weren’t exactly “top shelf.”
As I aimlessly walked, people smiled and waved.
It was weird that no one cared about how I behaved.
These were adults right? And I was a child.
Weren’t they worried that I would start running wild?
In fact, these folks seemed wilder than me;
Posing for pictures and hugging with glee.
It’s not like these people grew up with each other
Yet all of them seemed to love one another.
And frankly, it was strange, but in a good way,
Like finding a winged unicorn that decides to stay
In your cramped apartment, never wanting to part
And seemingly loving you with its entire heart.
It’s that kind of random affection that I admire,
And here, at this con, it can easily transpire.
That’s what I witnessed when, up on the stage,
A man rallied for charity projects to engage.
Everyone in the room was excited to give
Money and help so poor children could live.
It baffled me to see so many people pumped
To help complete strangers; I was totally stumped.
Later, I was browsing in an apparel booth
When a girl came up to me and asked, “Tell me the truth:
Are you the kid I saw dancing with that doll?
I swear you look just like him, plushie and all.”
I nodded and blushed as she continued her praise
“I’m sure it’s popular with the recent brony craze.
Hey, wait here for a sec, just for a few.
I have a hoodie that would look great on a cute kid like you.”
A moment later she came with a purple sweatshirt
She handed it to me and said, “Try it on, squirt.”
Even though it was hot, I complied with her order.
The shirt was extra large with green scales on the border.
My arms couldn’t make it to the holes in the sleeves
And the bottom of the hoodie rubbed against my knees.
The girl flipped my hood up and squealed with delight
As I peered under the hood; restoring my sight.
“Oh my goodness, you look just like Spike!”
And I wondered how I could look anything like
An inter dimensional baby dragon
Who carries our mail like the local mail wagon.
After she took pictures while telling me to twirl,
I peeled the hoodie off and gave it back to the girl.
But she pushed it back saying, “That one’s on me.
Don’t worry; you’ll grow into it eventually.”
She put the garment in a bag and sent me on my way,
And though, at the convention, I wanted to stay
It was getting late and everyone on the floor had cleared out.
So I began my search for an outlet route.
When I finally made it to the exit’s threshold
I spotted the man in black, trim and bold.
He waved at folks as they departed in peace,
And his exhaustion made his energy slowly decrease.
I ran to his side and he shook my hand
Saying, “All of today’s events proceeded as planned.
It’s finally over. Whoo boy, am I beat.
I spent most of the day standing up on my feet.”
I thanked him for everything and had to ask
If I could keep hold of the fine gentleman’s pass.
“Go for it dude, it’s not like I need it.
Heck, maybe next con you’ll be able to lead it.”
We waved our goodbyes and parted ways.
The Princess took this time to give me a phrase,
“It’s best if you don’t judge a book by its cover.”
Bronies were philanthropists disguised as pony lovers.
“Where have you been?! I was worried to death!”
The strong scent of alcohol consumed my dad’s breath.
Although my father wasn’t completely drunk yet
It was enough to make his anger blinding and set.
Princess Celestia and I had taken our time
Heading back home, through city grime,
But nonetheless joyous and filled with cheer
At all the good things that happened this year.
I thanked the Princess again and again
For staying so long and being a friend.
“Remember, there is more to friendship than just fun
It represents a bond as sure as the setting sun.
These bonds last for decades, centuries even,
And its power is something you must learn to believe in.”
The power of friendship was strong in our hearts
And our love for one another was way off the charts.
That’s why I was gloomy when, upon arrival,
My dad was yelling at me about my survival.
“What’s going to happen to me if you’re gone,
And your cash… money flow ceases to add on
To my work money, ever think of that?
We can’t afford any losses in money combat.”
I stood there silently, praying it would stop,
And onto his bed, my dad would flop.
He continued his lecture, face fully flush.
Until he spotted the doll, and at me he rushed.
He snatched up the Princess from my feeble arms,
And my mind started ringing all my mental alarms.
“My God, don’t tell me your spending money on this crap?”
He slurred as I reached for it, but my face, he slapped.
I landed on the ground hard as he squinted at the doll.
I knew my dad’s discovery would end up being my fall.
“No, this can’t be happening. I’m about to gag.
My only son’s a flaming homosexual fag!”
Angry tears began welling inside of my eyes,
And my dad grimaced at me, which was no surprise.
That’s it, that quirk was the last of my straws
I couldn’t bear the Princess in his mangy paws.
He had no idea what she meant to me,
And the rage I built up erupted savagely.
I yelled, “Give her back!” and charged at the oaf.
I slammed into him, knocking us both
Off our feet and my dad, I assailed
And managed to grab hold of the pony’s tail.
He kicked and punched but I wouldn’t let go.
I could feel the blood from my face start to flow.
My body stung like I was being stabbed by a knife,
But still I hung on to the doll for dear life.
“You little rat! Is this how I’m repaid
For the work that I do and the food that I’ve made?!”
So much was going on; all I could do was scream.
I didn’t even notice her tearing at the seam.
Suddenly, time slowed down to a crawl
As the tension broke and I started to fall.
My eyes widened and my mind turned to shreds
‘Cause my hands gripped a body that had lost its head.
My dad held her mane like he was pulling weeds.
The light in her eyes was replaced by glazed beads.
Fluff spilled out of her like a water faucet
I knew by that time, I had totally lost it.
“Welp, that settles that,” he dully muttered
As I gripped my face and physically shuddered.
I dug my nails into my face to keep my soul
From escaping my body, but I lost all control.
Weeping bitterly, I ran from my dad.
I ran from my home, ran from my sad.
Ran from my things on the floors and the shelf.
Ran from my heart, ran from myself.
I ran and I ran and I ran some more
I ran until my feet were swollen and sore.
I couldn’t destroy the mental photo copier
That copied the scene but made it darker and sloppier
The image distorted itself in my mind
Until a full fledge horror story had been designed.
I pictured the real head of the Princess being torn.
Her expression frozen in terror and scorn.
Suddenly, the head spoke. “You did this to me
I am dead because of your crude stupidity.”
At that moment, I was afraid to close my eyes
In fear of having to face that cruel reprise.
Just then, a thought creeped into my skull
And pecked at my brain like a starving seagull.
What if the Princess wasn’t really dead,
But, in fact, a character inside my head?
I’ve read something before, something with the same deal.
It had a boy that thinks his stuffed tiger is real.
Was I like him? Was it all in my brain?
Was I lying to myself? Was I completely insane?
I found myself in a familiar junction
And my legs decided this was a great place to lose function.
I looked up, my vision blurred by sticky tears,
At a sign that said, “Toy Shop. Get your toys here.”
After all this time, I’m back at the start
On that Christmas day, fate had a part.
It cared for my love; like a tree, let it grow,
And hacked it down with one swift blow.
I cursed the toy shop for all that it sells,
And I wished for it to fall through all of the hells.
Before I knew it, I was raising cain,
And throwing rocks at their window pane.
The police officer breathed a disappointing sigh
As I sat there, guilty and with my fists on my thigh.
He jotted some notes on his clipboard and asked,
“So you’re saying that you thought it’d be a blast
If you snuck from home, in the middle of the night
And busted some windows and toys, am I right?”
I sat there mute, in my own perspiration
‘Cause I really didn’t have any clear explanation.
The interrogation room was musty and small
And frankly, I wasn’t listening to him at all.
All I could think about was my blind attack
And hoped that my dad would welcome me back.
“Those bruises on your face look pretty bad
How’s about you give me your number and we call your dad.”
I nodded and told him the apartment’s phone number
Since the weight of my actions kept me encumbered.
As the officer went and called my pop
A part of me wanted the man to stop.
My heart told me that my dad was no good
But my head knew why and fully understood.
As much as I hated it, he was all that I got;
The only person left that had ever given me a shot.
He was an awful father, but at least he tried.
He told me he loved me; he wouldn’t lie.
After what felt like forever, my father arrived
He looked to be sober, but fairly contrived.
“This here’s your son, is that safe to presume?”
The officer asked when they entered the room.
My father took one look at what he had done
And unflinchingly said, “I don’t have a son.
I live alone in my one-bed apartment complex.
I mind my own business and cash my own checks.”
My heart sunk down into my stomach acid;
My throat was dry and my tongue was flaccid.
I started to think this was a horrid nightmare
And soon I'd wake up under a pony’s warm hair.
“Sir, then why didn’t you tell me this wasn’t your son on the phone?”
“The reception was bad. I would have told you if I’d known.”
“I’m guessing you don’t know anything about these bruises.”
“Even if I was a father, I wouldn’t be one that abuses.”
The officer shook his head and they said goodbye
And that night I lost my final ally.
The policeman returned with a tired frown
And said, “I may have written the wrong number down.”
Suddenly, an idea struck me like a lightning bolt
And I knew this chance was my last and final jolt.
I gave him yet another number to call
And prayed to God that he could read his own messy scrawl.
Once again, ages seemed to pass as I waited
And once or twice escaping was heavily debated.
Finally, I spotted him and time seemed to freeze;
The man in black heaving with his hands on his knees.
“Thanks for writing your number on the con pass,”
I said as we stopped at a station for gas.
“Jeez kid, I really don’t like lying to the cops.
If you were my son, I wouldn’t have you vandalizing shops.”
I replied by giving him an embarrassed laugh,
And thanked him for coming on my behalf.
“Yeah, don’t sweat it. It’s not like I’m tired
From running a convention that just transpired.”
I apologized thoroughly as we hit the road
Heading for the man in black’s humble abode.
While we drove, the man wanted me to construe.
“So you wanna fill me in on what happened to you?”
Instead of just telling him the tale of the night
I decided to tell him the whole story forthright.
Though I knew I sounded crazy, his face was solemn,
And by the end of the tale, I felt as crazy as Gollum.
“So, what you’re saying is the doll that I gave as a surprise
Was actually Celestia in a clever disguise?
Well, crap! Now I feel like I just got cheated.
But yeah, it kinda sucks the way you were treated.”
“Wait, so you don’t think I’m a crazy nut-job?”
“Nah. I mean, it’s not like you decided to rob
That tiny toy store or tried to kill your dad.
Princess Celestia liked you, so you can’t be that bad.”
I started to think that it was him that was mental
But suddenly, his face turned super sentimental.
“Kid, I got a secret that no one else knows.
Not my crew, not my wife, not even my bros.
The truth is, when I was a freshman in college.
Ya know, studyin’ real hard to boost up my knowledge.
Well, I had to stay there that Christmas, and I’m not gonna lie
Santa decided it would be best to bring me Pinkie Pie.”
I gave him a look like he was in the first grade,
And he chuckled at the silly face that I made.
“Granted, she only visited me for a single day
But the things that she did, I could never repay.
Heck, I’d never be running these cons without good ol’ Pinkie,
Now, I jump at the occasion like a fat man on a Twinkie.”
We both laughed happily at his witty remark
As he pulled into his driveway and started to park.
“Here, let’s attend to all those bruises and cuts
And you can crash at my house until you drive my wife nuts.
Unfortunately, everything she says, goes,
But she’ll probably be fine once you lose the dirty clothes.”
The house was a typical suburban dome
But still way better than my previous home.
After I cleaned up and brushed my teeth,
I blissfully slept on top of the cozy loveseat.
I was still quite shaken from all that transpired.
Luckily, forced exile was never required.
They let me stay for as long as I needed
‘til I was ready return to my dad unimpeded.
Turns out, when I finally overcame my despair
My father had hightailed his butt out of there.
He left the place desolate with all he could steal
Including all the evidence of the Princess being real.
I would later find out that all my records were expunged;
My dad burned them all and into orphanhood, I plunged.
Thankfully, the couple made their friendship apparent
By taking that opportunity to become foster parents.
Later, my foster dad would go on to say,
“Hey, we were planning on having a kid anyway.
Might as well begin with a nine-year head start.”
And we spent the years proceeding never apart.
They put me through school and helped me with class,
And I returned the favor by mowing the grass.
Although dealing with others was kind of a chore
As time went by, I learned to love once more.
Now that I’m older, it all seems like a glimmer,
And my memory of the Princess gets dimmer and dimmer.
That’s why I’ve gone on this written endeavor
‘Cause, I fear if I hadn’t, I’d lose her forever.
For the longest time, I believed she was real;
Her guidance, her principles, her kindness, her zeal.
But as time went by, school taught me to reason;
Saying that magical horses meant natural treason.
I was almost convinced by the close-minded world
Until yesterday, when my shutters uncurled.
Out of my blinds fell a fiery feather
And the Princess’ plan finally came all together.
Tears almost immediately came to my eyes
As I laughed at the random, delightful surprise.
I whispered my thanks for that pony’s assistance
And watched as the sun set off in the distance.