It was winter, and shortly before Christmas; the wind was howling and the snowflakes were pelting on the window-panes. Paul and Mary were sitting in a nice, warm room, watching their mother at her spinning-wheel.
"How I should like to have a little spinning-wheel!" said Mary; "then I could help you, mother."
"If I might make a wish," said Paul, "I would not wish for a spinning-wheel, but a sled with steel runners; then I could ride on the snow and ice. I would give you a ride, dear sister, and be careful not to upset you."
"Now," said the mother, "be contented for awhile; perhaps Santa Claus will bring you what you have wished for; you have been good, and Santa Claus loves good children. So that he may not forget your wishes, I'll write him a letter."
She seated herself at her writing-desk, and wrote the following: "Dear Santa Claus! I have two dear little children, who have been good during the whole year; their names are Paul and Mary. Both wish to ask a favor of you. Paul would like to have a sled with steel runners, Mary a little spinning-wheel. Will you not bring them? We sincerely beg you may grant these wishes, and the children promise always to be good and kind. Do not forget the wishes of mother, Paul and Mary."
They folded the letter, sealed it, and Paul's little pigeon was to be the letter-carrier. Mother tied a blue ribbon around the letter, and fastened it to the pigeon's neck. The pigeon flew out of the window and returned without the letter. The children counted the days till Christmas, and great was their joy when mother rang a little bell to tell them that Santa Claus had been there. They ran into the parlor, and there on the table stood a large Christmas tree, with many beautiful lights, and under it was a lovely red sled, with steel runners, for Paul, and a little spinning-wheel for Mary. Santa Claus had not only granted their wishes, but had also brought a beautiful wax doll for Mary, and a box of blocks for Paul. The children were very happy. Mary showed the spinning-wheel to her doll, and told her all about the letter to Santa Claus. Just then the pigeon flew into the room with another letter; this one was from Santa Claus, and this is what it said: "Santa Claus hears the wishes of good children, and loves to grant them." Paul and Mary continued to be good children, and took care of the letter that Santa Claus wrote them.
A Letter to Santa Claus
A Fictional Short Story by
Agnes Taylor Ketchum & Ida M. Jorgensen