Official Edgar Rice Burroughs Tribute Weekly Webzine Site
Since 1996 ~ 15,000 Web Pages In Archive
Volume 7590
John Martin


David Innes looked at Abner Perry with just a little bit of exasperation. "But they don't know about Christmas in Pellucidar," he told the old man.

“Exactly, David," Perry replied. "That's why I'm going to invent it for them.”

“But there's nothing here to base it on," insisted David. "They don't know about Bethlehem because it's on the outer surface, and I don't imagine that very many of them have traveled as far as the polar opening so they've never heard of Santa Claus.”

“You're forgetting one thing, David," admonished Perry. "We're not the only people from the outer crust to have discovered Pellucidar, and there's a very well-known Christmas poem that mentions them.”

“Sure there is. Sure there is," said David. "And just what poem would that be?”

“You'll recognize it easily," said Perry. "It's the one that has the line, 'More rapid than eagles the Korsars they came'.

I'm telling you why...

“Whew! I don't see anyone else coming up the ramp and it's starting to get real quiet in the streets of Helium," said Dejah Thoris. "I think I'll turn out the porch light.”

“Go ahead," said John Carter. "We're almost out of Halloween candy anyway.”

“No, we're not," said Dejah. "I have lots more in the kitchen.”

“It was a good idea," said Carter, "with the red candies for the red Martians and green for the little Tharks.”

“Well," said Dejah. "I had to plan ahead and make twice as much for the Tharks. There aren't as many of them around here but those four hands of theirs just seem to keep grabbing and grabbing.”

“I think the Warhoon kids are worse," said Carter. "Their parents don't teach them any manners at all.”

“Yes," said Dejah. " We do have to put up with some mischievous behavior. But that's part of Halloween. I'm kind of glad you introduced this Jasoomian tradition to us. But I don't know what I'm going to do with all that extra candy.”

John Carter smiled. "No problem," he said. "We'll keep them fresh in these Tupperware containers I brought from Jasoom."

“But John," she said. "Even in Tupperware the candy won't last a whole Martian year.”

“No," smiled the Warlord. "But it will last a few Barsoomian months, and red and green are the traditional holiday colors for the next Earth tradition I'm going to introduce -- it's called Christmas.”

“Christmas?" Dejah asked. "What on Earth is that all about?”

“Well, it's about peace on Earth," said Carter. "But that would never fly on Barsoom. But there's another Earth tradition that I think will be popular with many, including you, sweetie.”

"Ooooh," said Dejah. "What's that?"

"Shopping," said the Warlord.


The mighty airship's engines hummed in freezing Arctic air,
The Midnight Sun reflected in the landscape's snowy glare;
Up ahead a vast depression spread across the ground:
The polar opening through which Pellucidar was found.
Jason Gridley and his men were awestruck at the sight,
As Tarzan donned his parachute and cinched the straps up tight;
And as the aircraft ventured near the natural entry trough,
Tarzan opened up a hatch: "Well, here's where I get off."
Jason gave a smart salute and Tarzan smiled back,
He wore no special clothing, let alone a furry Mac,
Clad in just his loin cloth, his knife, and bow and arrows,
Clothing that would make most people freeze down to their marrows.
Tarzan leaped into the air and dropped below the ship,
His chute unfolded properly and frigid air did grip,
He floated to the snows below and landed not too far,
From the spot where Jason's zeppelin dropped to Pellucidar.
Tarzan doffed his parachute but saved some strands of rope
To complement his armament, and took off at a lope.
He crossed through tracts of ice and snow toward the planet's dome
To reach his destination -- a cozy little home.
At last he saw the little house which was his destination,
Surrounded by the barns and workshops of the installation.
Lights shown through the windows with their criss-crossed panes of glass,
Just like a Kinkade painting for which it could easily pass.
He rapped three times upon the door; it opened without pause,
And standing there to greet him was the smiling Mrs. Claus,
Just as her husband of renown, her eyes were lit with twinkles
And sleighbells on her bracelet sounded out some merry tinkles.
"Come right on in," she said to him, "he's been expecting you,
"I'll rustle up some cookies and a cup of chocolate brew."
Santa, from his office, came out to the vestibule,
And shook the ape man's hand and wished for him a Happy Yule.
They sat down in the parlor near a roaring fireplace,
Santa glad to rest a moment from his hectic pace.
Tarzan held his cup and took some satisfying sips,
And was happy for the cookies with the melted chocolate chips.
Then it was time to get down to the reason that he'd come;
Santa took his pencil and discreetly licked his thumb.
He flipped the pages of his log until he came to find,
The one that had the Greystoke name. "So what is on your mind?"
"Well I have brought my Christmas list," said Tarzan to the man,
"Just to give you some ideas for members of my clan."
Santa smiled broadly as the elves picked up the dishes,
There was nothing he liked better than fulfilling Christmas wishes.
"Jane once made an awesome spear when trapped in Pal-ul-don,
"We placed it o'er the fire place and fastened it thereon,
"And so she needs another one to make sure she prevails
"When she goes out on hunting trips on danger-ridden trails."
"And what about your son," asked Santa. "Isn't 'Boy' his name?"
(The scar on Tarzan's face began to redden and inflame.)
"Oops! I mean 'Korak,' " Santa said, "I must have been confused,
"I watch too many movies. I hope I'll be excused."
"That's okay," said Tarzan, his old wound settling down,
"He'd love a diecast lorry, like ones in London town.
"We bought him one for Christmas, the year he ran away;
"But now he likes collecting them and has them on display."
"That takes care of him," said Santa. "Now, for Meriem,
"Perhaps a golden necklace with a scintillating gem?"
But Tarzan said, "She loved the doll she clung to when a lass,
"And now that doll has lots of friends she's managed to amass."
"And then there's La," said Tarzan. Santa nearly went insane:
"Isn't she the one who tried to kill both you and Jane?"
"True," said Tarzan, "but since then, we've reached an understanding.
"So when it comes to me and Jane she isn't so demanding.
"I was kind of thinking, a new sacrificial blade,
"But her preference for the old one would have the new outweighedl
"So instead I think some tins of flavored sweeteners
"Would help her cups of victims' blood taste more like fine liquers.
"And Tantor'd like some pumpkins he could smash and smush and split,
"And Jad-bal-la some fleet eland to chase and keep him fit;
"Nkima'd love a new sharp stick to carry notes from me,
"And a bale of fresh bananas for him 'neath the Christmas tree."
"And how 'bout you," said Mister Claus, "You're also on my list.
"I'd hate to see you be the only one that Santa missed!"
"Don't worry," said the ape man. "It kind of just depends
"If I get home for Christmas after I have helped some friends.
"I'm going to Pellucidar when I go back outside,
"To catch up with the zeppelin that took me on this ride.
"I'll use the Polar opening that I've traversed before
"And scan the curved horizon for the Jason Gridley corps.
"Will I be home by Christmas? There is no guarantee,
"We have to fight an awesome foe and must have victory.
"Pellucidar's a timeless world and so I just can't say,
"I might be gone for several years; I may be back today."
--John "Bridge" Martin


TARZAN BUBBLE GUM: Another sticky situation for the ape man.
SKOR: I wonder what Skor puts in these bars?
MOON PIE: When the Red Hawk needs a burst of energy.
MARS: They ought to make a Barsoom bar.
BRIDGE MIX: A handful of these will settle your stomach for hours.

It might be unlikely that you will find Tarzan candy or bubble gum in your Christmas stocking unless Santa wants to shop on ebay for some vintage and/or perhaps stale stuff, but there's plenty of other fresh ERB candy out there that could be stuffed in your suspended hose or for you to gather and enrich someone else with both calories and booty.

I'm not so sure I would want a Skor bar, through, because after all the namesake character was one whose main claim to fame in "Lost on Venus" was that reanimated dead people.
But a Moon Pie could be a tasty treat as one reads the adventures of the Julians, or a Mars bar while following the saga of John Carter and others on Barsoom.

And I can imagine that Billy Byrne and Bridge while on the hobo road might have kept up their energy by munching handfuls of Bridge Mix.

Merry Christmas!


I think I'll go to Mars today
And rescue a lovely princess
From savage Tharks who don't much care
That they have caused her distress.
It won't be all that easy',
For we might just run afoul
Of green men in pursuit of us
Or Warhoons on the prowl.
But if we're separated,
I'll make sure I still live,
And with my expert swordsmanship,
Those enemies I'll rive.
And once we're Man and Princess,
I'll care for her fore'er,
Protecting her and rescuing her
From danger everywhere,
And even when she's threatened with
A fate that's worse than death,
I'll show up in the nick of time
While both of us have breath.
My partner's ridden off to town
To buy some mining gear;
When he returns I do not think
That he will find me here.
He can dig up all that ore
To spend as he grows old;
My princess is a treasure
Worth more than any gold.
Yes, I think I'll go to Mars today,
Not sure just what time or how,
But stars and planets are aligned;
So...any moment now.
--John Martin
"That we were ever able to communicate with them is due to the presence upon Mars of that deathless Virginian, John Carter,
whose miraculous transportation to Mars occurred March 4th, 1866, as every school child of the twenty-first century knows."
-- Edgar Rice Burroughs, "The Moon Maid," Chapter I, "An Adventure in Space"


Visit our thousands of other sites at:
ERB Text, ERB Images and Tarzan® are ©Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc.- All Rights Reserved.
All Original Work ©1996-2022 by Bill Hillman and/or Contributing Authors/Owners
No part of this web site may be reproduced without permission from the respective owners.