Thursday, June 16, 2011

Epithalamium: Eighth Hour

Village weddings are complex affairs –
Most kindly described as “political.”
Once fiddlers get their pay, they'll put on airs
To quilt the planks with quadrille, waltz and reel,
And play the summer chimneys from their swallows,
Dead men from their gallows,
And old folk back to darling dreams of youth.
The fife, the bohdran, squeezebox and banjos
Rouse “The Mad Buckgoat” to jigs, and tell truth
To “Priest in His Boots” with “Aileen Aroon”
To dance up “A Scot’s Tune.”
The farmer boys hum them all, running apace
From graveyard to church steps, except today
A holy hush recalls them from their play…
They blush dumb with looks to see the bride’s face,
Prepared at last, bouquet for anchor, fast
And firm before a last
Glance to the choir loft where voice joins voice to this
That sings to find its nature by the key of grace.

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