This is a sonnet based on Matthew 9:14-17 which reads,
14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?”
15 And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. 16 No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. 17 Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”
They pour a pitiful whine about His disciples not fasting–
A bitter tasting brew of mercies grown stale and old,
Like an unprepared patch which makes worse the fast’ning,
Pulling brittle devotion from a heart that’s grown cold.
“There can be no sorrow” he said, “while the bridegroom tarries
No grieving or renting one’s garments in shame
For the joy of His presence lifts their hearts and carries
Them forward in celebration to the praise of his name.”
But one day they did mourn as the Groom was led away
To pour out his life into a stone wineskin’s shell.
Stopped up and sealed fast in silence for three days
Till Mary brought the news which no guest tires to tell,
“Rejoice for the New Wine the Groom’s resurrection pours
The Bridegroom’s bubbled blessing has burst open death’s door!”
© Randy Edwards 2015
artwork: Phillip Medhurst – Photo by Harry Kossuth. Print 5297 in Volume 38 of the Bowyer Bible in Bolton Museum, England. Etching by Jan Luyken; photo by Harry Kossuth; file created by Phillip Medhurst.