‘Twas the Night Before Finals
‘Twas the night before Finals, when all throughout college,
Not a student was stirring, besides cramming their knowledge;
The libraries were full of undergrads and their books,
And anyone who spoke received dirty looks;
The slackers were holed up sweating in their room,
Dreading the many exams and essays that loom;
I had settled into Tippie and was hoping to study,
Though the weather had left me feeling pretty cruddy,
When far down the hall there arose such a bang,
That up from my one-man plastic table I sprang.
Down three flights of stairs I leapt like a frog,
Threw open the wide doors to greet the evening fog.
The nearby lampposts lit the courtyard aglow,
Exposing the small, dirty patches of snow,
When what to my sleep-deprived eyes did appear,
But a portrait come to life in front of me here,
Stepping out from an old VW Bug onto the lawn,
Was a man I knew to be John Pappajohn.
In his hands were balanced boxes: flat, white and square,
And as he smiled at me I could do nothing but stare.
His hair was quite thin, and his glasses askew,
But I had seen his giant portrait enough times that I knew;
He strolled through the door I had left still ajar,
And I followed behind him upstairs to the coffee bar.
After finding my table, he sat with a huff,
Before pulling out a blunt and beginning to puff!
He held out his hand to pass me the joint,
After which I could do nothing but point;
“Listen, I would love to light up with you, buddy,
But in case you hadn’t noticed, I’m trying to study!”
At this he coughed, or maybe it was a laugh,
Took all my papers and tore them right in half.
“Come on, kid, you’re wound up too tight!
Take a break from dead week for a smoke and a bite.”
Then he opened those boxes, and to my surprise,
Each one was full of steaming pizza pies.
“I thought you weren’t that Papa John,” I gasped,
And he gave me a glare that I still have not grasped.
“That doesn’t mean that I can’t have some fun,
Now take a quick break before you get that work done.”
I had never known a ghost could be so damn cool,
So I decided to join him, since I wasn’t a tool.
We ate all the food and we smoked all the weed,
And I found myself paying my assignments no heed.
Then after a while, the ghost rose from his chair,
And gave me a wink that I knew meant, “Take care.”
Down those great stairs he tottered with ease,
Out the large doors, and off into the breeze.
But I heard him exclaim, before he was out of sight–
“Happy Finals to all, and to all a good night!”