My 2020 Susanna Hill Holiday Contest Entry!

Hello Everyone! As many of you know by now, I love writing contests! Prompts and deadlines are my JAM! (Otherwise, I seriously could tinker on my poems and stories FOREVER!). This entry is for Susanna Hill’s 10th Annual Holiday Contest for Children’s Writers.

The prompt/rules: “Write a children’s holiday story (for children ages 12 and under) about a “Holiday Helper.” The story must have kid-appeal, a main character, a true narrative arc, and it may not exceed 250 words.”

Here’s my best shot… Thanks for reading and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!! 🙂


By Rebecca Gardyn Levington

244 words

[Note: “Shamash” is pronounced “shah-MAHSH”]

The menorah’s “helper candle,” the Shamash, as she is known,

has never ever asked for help. She likes to work alone.

For all eight nights of Hannukah, Shamash ignites each candle.

“A gust of wind? A sneeze? A fan? There’s nothing I can’t handle!”

Shamash can’t wait to start night one! She’s luminous and strong!

She dazzles on the second night and hums The Dreidel Song.

Night three arrives. Shamash continues beaming, all aglow.

But on night four she flickers, fades. Her pacing starts to slow.

Her blaze begins to dim night five. She fights with all her might.

But on night six, she’s feeling faint. “I…mustn’t…lose…my….light!”

The seventh night, Shamash is snuffed. She’s lost all spunk and spark.

“I blew it! I’m extinguished!” she says, sobbing in the dark.

“Need a light?” A voice calls out from up upon the shelf.

“You mustn’t feel you need to do this job all by yourself!”

A little lighter flicks a flame, announcing: “Hi, I’m Bic!”

“And I’m Shamash!” She brightens, as he lights her wilted wick.

Shamash, at last, alight again, illuminates the rest.

She beams as all eight candles gleam. “I love night eight the best!

“Oh, Bic! You are a miracle! You saved our holiday!”

“I’m happy I could help,” he says, then tucks his torch away.

Shamash prefers to work alone. “But this year, I’ll admit,

that thanks to you, my new friend Bic, this Hannukah is LIT!”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *