for the Middle Classes
A quiet word from the Maitre d' who whispers behind his hand;
immediately, the father of the bride can understand,
he hadn't catered for his son-in-law's more raucous friends,
the finest wine in Cana town is coming to an end!
His daughter, sweet and twenty, like a Queen, reigns as the bride
his worried wife is finally relaxing, at his side;
he will become a laughing stock and wreck his reputation -
but Jesus, Son of Joseph, is among the congregation.
The wild and wandering preacher quickly listens to the story
and with the laying on of hands, he blesses the amphorae.
The wedding guests exclaim they've never tasted wine so good
with a fine bouquet of summer fruits and a hint of sandalwood.
Never had they tasted of a vintage so complete!
While Jesus thought "You're right, my friend, it's sixty-one Lafite".
O God of Wedgwood china and of Brierley crystal glasses!
O God of Abigail's party and aspiring middle classes!
O God who mourns a sparrow's fall and saves his people's faces,
who smiles indulgently while watching all our airs and graces,
who spares our many blushes and forfends the social gaffe,
who gives life more abundantly - when did you cease to laugh?
The jug of wine, the loaf of bread, consumed beneath the bough,
the true, the blushful Hippocrene, it needs your blessing now.
Where thieves can't steal and moth can't spoil, now must we store our treasure
and in the vintner's cellars can no longer seek our pleasure.
We leave the wedding guests, while on the bread and wine they sup.
When next we see you drinking, it is from a bitter cup.
If you have any comments on her poem, Veronica Milvus would like to hear them.