A Louisiana Mom’s Mardi Gras Poem

Carnival season’s finally here,
It’s Louisiana’s time of year.
In her purple, green, and gold she will shine,
And we’ll wave napkins to the second line!
From wagons we will make tiny floats for school.
The children will sit and the parents will pull.
Our hard work will be paraded and shown 
As they throw beads from their feathery thrones.
School will let out for Fat Tuesday.
Here it’s a week-long holiday! 
There’ll be balls, masquerades, parades, throws,
Elaborate floats with krewes and flambeaus.
King cake for breakfast, king cake for dessert.
Need a good one?  I’m a king cake expert.
We’ve tried the king cakes from every store,
And when it’s gone we go and get some more.
I’ll bring my kids down to New Orleans 
To see the Mardi Gras kings and queens.
Carts will roll by with overpriced toys
Lighting up to entice girls and boys.
It’s a battle few parents will win.
Kids rejoice as their parents give in.
My kids and I are up in boxes on ladders.
For the rest of the day, I’ll be their bead-batter,
Swatting beads away from their heads and eyes,
I’ll shield them from any R-rated surprise.
On every float there’s a lively Krewe
Singing loudly “they all asked for you.” 
For many krewes, wearing a mask is the law.
This protects reputations at Mardi Gras.
I’m hollering and I’ve got both hands up 
Because I really want to catch some cups.
They are Louisiana dinnerware, ya know?
They are perfect for kids and adults on the go.
By the end of the night, it is a guarantee 
That my kids will be especially top-heavy.
The beads on their necks will weigh at least 8 lbs
But that certainly will not slow them down.
All of the children will look so cute 
As they carry their big bags of loot.
So proud of everything that they caught,
An accomplishment that cannot be bought.
My friends in the North don’t have a clue
About why we do the things we do,
Like hiding plastic babies inside of cakes
Or taking 100 beads home as keepsakes.
They disapprove when I say “where y’at?”
And want to know “what is a who dat?”
I tell them they’ll have to come and see,
And then I know that they will agree.
“Throw me something, mister!” is what we will say.
Together we’ll laissez les bons temps rouler!


About Rachel Chustz

Rachel was born and raised in Alexandria and moved to Baton Rouge to go to college at LSU. Rachel graduated in Elementary Education and shortly after met her now-husband, Michael. She went back to school to get her Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction and was an school teacher for several years.   When Rachel and Michael had their first child, Rachel decided to be a stay-at-home mother.  They now have three children: Tripp (7), Charlotte (5), and Joseph (1). If Rachel isn’t at an extracurricular activity with her children, she enjoys volunteering in the community, reading, barre class, and traveling with her family. 




  1. Rachal Dalrymple Chustz!! I am Sooo Proud of You and Your Story’s, and Now You’re a Poet!! WHO WOULD HAVE EVER KNOWN!! Little Lady THERE’S Nothing You Can’t Do! I just Love It when Linda comes over or Hollers at Me from the Front Porch,(Girl You’ve Just got to See what Rachal has Accomplished Now) and I break my Neck to get over there to See or Read what You’ve Blessed Us with this Time) Rachal You are Sooo Talented! Please Keep Up The Writing?cause Everybody Thoroughly Enjoys Reading and Sharing Your Stories??✌️?


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