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A Visit from Writing Center Consultants

December 4, 2015

 Originally: A Visit from St. Nicholas by Clement Clarke Moore

By: Kendall MacVean

Twas the night before finals, when all through the library,

Everyone was studying, even the wary,

The books were sitting on the tables with care,

In hopes that knowledge would soon be there,

The students were nestled all snug in a chair,

While visions of straight A’s danced in the air,

And the students at their desks and I in my seat,

Had just readied our brains for the long week’s feat,

When throughout the library there arose such a clatter,

I sprang from my seat to see what was the matter.

Away to the 2nd floor I flew like a flash,

Tore open the doors and entered with a clash.

The fluorescent lights of the well-lit floor,

Gave a luster of midnight to a hundred students or more,

When what to my wondering eyes did appear,

But a writing center consultant without fear,

With a little notepad and advice for every adult,

I knew in a moment she must be here to consult.

More rapid than eagles her colleagues they came,

And she whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:

“Now, Jerry! Now, Kendall! Now Skylar and Rose!

On, Jonathan! On, Isabel! On, Mercer and Chris to the prose!

To the top of the second floor! To the top of the third!

Now advise away! Advise away! Advise away every word!”


So up to every floor the consultants they flew

With books full of knowledge, and kindness too–

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on every bookend

The talking and laughing of each new writing friend,

As I walked through the library, and was turning around,

Down the bookshelves the consultants came with a bound.

They were dressed all in sweaters, bright colors head to foot,

And their fingers were all tarnished with pencil lead and careful input,

A bundle of citation books and handouts they flung on their backs,

And they looked like a schoolteacher just opening their backpack.

Their eyes- how they twinkled! Their suggestions, how merry!

Their cheeks were like roses, their noses like a cherry!

Their happy mouths were spilling out help like a waterfall,

And the students responded with eager ears and eyeball,

The stump of a pencil they held tight in their hands,

And the lead, it flew as it helped the students with plans,

They each had a friendly face and a collaboration to offer

That shook the students with excitement, like finding a coffer.

They were of many shapes and sizes, a helpful rag-tag gang,

And with such joy and glee from their visit, from my seat I again sprang,

A wink of their eyes and a twist of their heads

Soon gave me to know that I had nothing more to dread,

They spoke many a word, and went straight to their work,

And filled the students with knowledge, then turned with jerk,

And laying their fingers to the side of their noses,

And giving a nod, returned to the writing center that everyone knows,

They sprang to the lower level, each consultant gave a whistle,

And away they flew with the might of a missile.

But I heard them exclaim, leaving all students awestruck –

“Happy Finals to all, and to all good luck!”

Works Consulted:

Moore, Clement Clarke. “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” Academy of American Poets, n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2015.

Tables near Reference Stacks on Edge of Reading Room. 2007. Boone. Belk Library and Information Commons at Appalachian State. Web. 18 Nov. 2015.

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