Santa Claus Christmas Stories – For Kids Free Christmas Short Stories: Over the years, Christmas has inspired many authors to write about its spirit and significance. The spirit that embodies charity, forgiveness, friendship, unselfish love and generosity. In the stories that follow, you will find many examples of what makes the Christmas Spirit so unique and special. Though most of these stories have been written for children, readers of all ages will enjoy these skillfully told tales.
A Letter from Santa Claus
Palace of Saint Nicholas in the Moon
My Dear Susy Clemens,
I have received and read all the letters which you and your little
sister have written me . . . . I can read your and your baby
sister’s jagged and fantastic marks without any trouble at all. But
I had trouble with those letters which you dictated through your
mother and the nurses, for I am a foreigner and cannot read English
writing well. You will find that I made no mistakes about the things
which you and the baby ordered in your own letters–I went down your
chimney at midnight when you were asleep and delivered them all
myself–and kissed both of you, too . . . . But . . . there
were . . . one or two small orders which I could not fill because we
ran out of stock . . . .
There was a word or two in your mama’s letter which . . . I took to
be “a trunk full of doll’s clothes.” Is that it? I will call at your
kitchen door about nine o’clock this morning to inquire. But I must
not see anybody and I must not speak to anybody but you. When the
kitchen doorbell rings, George must be blindfolded and sent to the
door. You must tell George he must walk on tiptoe and not speak–
otherwise he will die someday. Then you must go up to the nursery
and stand on a chair or the nurse’s bed and put your ear to the
speaking tube that leads down to the kitchen and when I whistle
through it you must speak in the tube and say, “Welcome, Santa
Claus!” Then I will ask whether it was a trunk you ordered or not.
If you say it was, I shall ask you what color you want the trunk to
be . . . and then you must tell me every single thing in detail
which you want the trunk to contain. Then when I say “Good-by and a
merry Christmas to my little Susy Clemens,” you must say “Good-by,
good old Santa Claus, I thank you very much.” Then you must go down
into the library and make George close all the doors that open into
the main hall, and everybody must keep still for a little while. I
will go to the moon and get those things and in a few minutes I will
come down the chimney that belongs to the fireplace that is in the
hall–if it is a trunk you want–because I couldn’t get such a thing
as a trunk down the nursery chimney, you know . . . .If I should
leave any snow in the hall, you must tell George to sweep it into
the fireplace, for I haven’t time to do such things. George must not
use a broom, but a rag–else he will die someday . . . . If my boot
should leave a stain on the marble, George must not holystone it
away. Leave it there always in memory of my visit; and whenever you
look at it or show it to anybody you must let it remind you to be a
good little girl. Whenever you are naughty and someone points to
that mark which your good old Santa Claus’s boot made on the marble,
what will you say, little sweetheart?
Good-by for a few minutes, till I come down to the world and ring the kitchen doorbell.
Your loving Santa Claus
Whom people sometimes call
“The Man in the Moon”
The Little Match Girl
Most terribly cold it was; it snowed, and was nearly quite dark, and evening– the last evening of the year. In this cold and darkness there went along the street a poor little girl, bareheaded, and with naked feet. When she left home she had slippers on, it is true; but what was the good of that? They were very large slippers, which her mother had hitherto worn; so large were they; and the poor little thing lost them as she scuffled away across the street, because of two carriages that rolled by dreadfully fast.
One slipper was nowhere to be found; the other had been laid hold of by an urchin, and off he ran with it; he thought it would do capitally for a cradle when he some day or other should have children himself. So the little maiden walked on with her tiny naked feet, that were quite red and blue from cold. She carried a quantity of matches in an old apron, and she held a bundle of them in her hand. Nobody had bought anything of her the whole livelong day; no one had given her a single farthing.
She crept along trembling with cold and hunger–a very picture of sorrow, the poor little thing!
The flakes of snow covered her long fair hair, which fell in beautiful curls around her neck; but of that, of course, she never once now thought. From all the windows the candles were gleaming, and it smelt so deliciously of roast goose, for you know it was New Year’s Eve; yes, of that she thought.
In a corner formed by two houses, of which one advanced more than the other, she seated herself down and cowered together. Her little feet she had drawn close up to her, but she grew colder and colder, and to go home she did not venture, for she had not sold any matches and could not bring a farthing of money: from her father she would certainly get blows, and at home it was cold too, for above her she had only the roof, through which the wind whistled, even though the largest cracks were stopped up with straw and rags.
Her little hands were almost numbed with cold. Oh! a match might afford her a world of comfort, if she only dared take a single one out of the bundle, draw it against the wall, and warm her fingers by it. She drew one out. “Rischt!” how it blazed, how it burnt! It was a warm, bright flame, like a candle, as she held her hands over it: it was a wonderful light. It seemed really to the little maiden as though she were sitting before a large iron stove, with burnished brass feet and a brass ornament at top. The fire burned with such blessed influence; it warmed so delightfully. The little girl had already stretched out her feet to warm them too; but–the small flame went out, the stove vanished: she had only the remains of the burnt-out match in her hand.
She rubbed another against the wall: it burned brightly, and where the light fell on the wall, there the wall became transparent like a veil, so that she could see into the room. On the table was spread a snow-white tablecloth; upon it was a splendid porcelain service, and the roast goose was steaming famously with its stuffing of apple and dried plums. And what was still more capital to behold was, the goose hopped down from the dish, reeled about on the floor with knife and fork in its breast, till it came up to the poor little girl; when–the match went out and nothing but the thick, cold, damp wall was left behind. She lighted another match. Now there she was sitting under the most magnificent Christmas tree: it was still larger, and more decorated than the one which she had seen through the glass door in the rich merchant’s house.
Thousands of lights were burning on the green branches, and gaily-colored pictures, such as she had seen in the shop-windows, looked down upon her. The little maiden stretched out her hands towards them when–the match went out. The lights of the Christmas tree rose higher and higher, she saw them now as stars in heaven; one fell down and formed a long trail of fire.
“Someone is just dead!” said the little girl; for her old grandmother, the only person who had loved her, and who was now no more, had told her, that when a star falls, a soul ascends to God.
She drew another match against the wall: it was again light, and in the lustre there stood the old grandmother, so bright and radiant, so mild, and with such an expression of love.
“Grandmother!” cried the little one. “Oh, take me with you! You go away when the match burns out; you vanish like the warm stove, like the delicious roast goose, and like the magnificent Christmas tree!” And she rubbed the whole bundle of matches quickly against the wall, for she wanted to be quite sure of keeping her grandmother near her. And the matches gave such a brilliant light that it was brighter than at noon-day: never formerly had the grandmother been so beautiful and so tall. She took the little maiden, on her arm, and both flew in brightness and in joy so high, so very high, and then above was neither cold, nor hunger, nor anxiety–they were with God.
But in the corner, at the cold hour of dawn, sat the poor girl, with rosy cheeks and with a smiling mouth, leaning against the wall–frozen to death on the last evening of the old year. Stiff and stark sat the child there with her matches, of which one bundle had been burnt. “She wanted to warm herself,” people said. No one had the slightest suspicion of what beautiful things she had seen; no one even dreamed of the splendor in which, with her grandmother she had entered on the joys of a new year.
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