Despite the festive holidays being behind us, I thought it would be nice to feature the poem Krampus Comes to Town by Robert Payne Cabeen, he has an interesting perspective of comparing and contrasting the idea of the jolly Saint Nick versus his sister counterpart, Krampus.
Robert Payne Cabeen is a screenwriter, artist, purveyor of narrative horror poetry, and now a novelist, with his Bram Stoker Award winning debut Cold Cuts, from Omnium Gatherum. His screenwriting credits include Heavy Metal 2000, for Columbia TriStar, Sony Pictures, A Monkey’s Tale, and Walking with Buddha. Cabeen’s illustrated book, FEARWORMS: Selected Poems, was a 2015 Bram Stoker Award nominee.
As creative director for Streamline Pictures, Robert helped anime pioneer Carl Macek bring Japanese animated features, like Akira and dozens of other classics, to a western audience.
Cabeen received a Master of Fine Arts degree from Otis Art Institute, with a dual major in painting and design. Since then, he has combined his interests in the visual arts with screenwriting and storytelling for a broad range of entertainment companies including Warner Brothers, Columbia/TriStar, Disney, Sony, Universal, and USA Network.
Robert is a city of Lost Angels native. He resides in the Miracle Mile with his wife Cecile Grimm. Together, they spawned three offspring–all smarter, better looking and more talented than he is–but certainly not as scary.For more about Robert Payne Cabeen, visit: robertpaynecabeen.com
Krampus Comes to Town
Before the night that Santa comes—
And kids jump up and down.
They’re unaware, about the night
That Krampus comes to town.
And, why should they, the innocent,
The guileless and the pure,
Have knowledge of the horror that
The wicked will endure?
Some say he is a fairy tale—
A myth from way back when.
Some say he is the Lord of Yule
Or Santa’s evil twin.
He doesn’t need you to believe,
Or care how you might feel.
If you are on his list of names,
You’ll find out if he’s real.
If you’ve been disobedient,
And rowdy, too,
I wouldn’t worry very much.
Krampus won’t bother you.
He’s hunting for the evil ones
Who prey upon the weak.
The ones who thrive on misery
And have a vicious streak.
The brutal ones, the heatless ones,
Who relish pain and fear—
The bullies and their hangers-on
Who hit and laugh and jeer.
If you have tortured helpless kids
For how they looked or talked,
Krampus will surely come for you—
Tonight you will be stalked.
If you’re afraid, lock all the doors
And close the windows tight,
But he’s coming, coming, coming
For you this very night.
It takes a beast to know a beast.
And you, he knows too well.
Run if you must, hide if you can—
He’ll track you by your smell.
When Krampus finally sniffs you out,
And yes, he surely will,
He’ll stuff you in his bully bag—
A hunter with his kill.
He’ll drag you screaming to his lair—
Across the cold wet roofs.
You’ll hear the weathered shingles crack
Beneath his cloven hooves.
His fetid breath and musky fur
Will sear your tender nose.
Just where it is he’s taking you,
Nobody really knows.
And if you’ve made an outcast wish
That they were never born,
Krampus will take his time with you,
And gut you with a horn.
He’ll thrash you with his thorny sticks,
And flog you with his chain.
No Christmas gift for you this year—
Your present is your pain.
You terrorize the neighborhood,
The playground at your school,
But you’ll babble like a baby,
When blood begins to pool.
And you’ll crawl just like an infant
Through blood and poop and pee,
While Krampus points and laughs at you
With ridicule and glee.
He’ll tango to the music of
Your futile screams and cries
And lap up all the salty tears
That rain down from your eyes.
Your parents and the sheriff will
Search on and on and on.
By morning, he’ll be done with you
And Krampus will be gone.
Someday, somewhere, someone will find
Your brittle bully bones
In a basement or a boiler room
With other cruel unknowns.
But Krampus has a long, long list
And might not get to you.
You may want to reconsider
The things you say and do.
Compassion is not frail or weak,
Its power is profound.
You’ll need that strength, next Krampusnacht
When Krampus comes around.
Feel Free to check out the book, Fearworms where the poem comes from.