To The Bride and Groom


Title unknown. One of J.Rod Swenson’s infamous “Bob the Dog” paintings.

(In honor of Rod and Liz Ann Larson-Swenson’s union read aloud on their wedding day. )

The other day in a

Class I was teaching

We were figuring out

The Trinity like

Fifth graders trying out

Some new unknown


We the dust

Flirting and flitting with

Him Who ever Holds

Us up

Yet dives below our

Deathening prides

To pull up our

New lives.

So I laughed

A big Swedish laugh

(I’m half-Swedish, you know)


So I laughed

A big half-Swedish laugh

At the metaphors

And J. Roderick

The big Swede rolled my way

Like a cord of lumber

Like a carton of

Fresh-tapped maple syrup

Wanting to slam-dance

And when he was done slamming

And yelling his deafening love

Into my left ear

I watched him lay down weeping

Beside a pool named Bethesda

I heard him cry toward

Each of the five porticos.

And you should know

When he cries

He cries like a herd of children.

This thug of love

His leathered ears hanging on

Like medals pinned

On the head of old wars

Suddenly revived and baptized


Cleansed and refashioned

In the reddened wells

Of faith, hope and love.

So, peddling and prowling he goes

Down lonely city streets

With his reborn ears

As soft as cream

Searching the echoes

Measuring the vibrations

Or grinning and thinking

About pattering up and

Wrapping around Liz Ann

The way a warm rain

Wraps and makes you laugh

Saying “It’s me

Me and It’s okay hmmmn

It’s okay…it’s me hmnnn.”

And they settle

Like two polished stones

Sunk down to pool’s bottom

Just off the Loveshack.

” Christopher!” Rod would say

” This is the part of the poem

Where you’re supposed to teach


Rod would say that.

” Christopher!…You are a

Wonderful teacher!”

[SLAM! SLAM! like thick lumber and syrup]

And he’s right

It’s not like I’m the first one to interrupt a poem

Or be interrupted by life

Or by Life Himself!


Thank God we’ve been interrupted

And you have been interrupted

And God has interrupted us

And His interruption is always



At the end of most weddings

We look to the bride and groom

And want them to be

All we were once

Meant to be.

I tell you this …

(This is the teaching part)

They are now

All YOU are still meant to be…

Beloved and betrothed

Spoken to and spoken for

Given and taken at

A great marriage feast.


Then watch this remarkable woman

Watch this chosen man

Like those outside of time

Aiming to become Jesus

Metaphors infleshed.


When you look on them

Who are now married

The holy dancing laughter

Will infect you

The redemption will swirl and sing

With figures both named

And unnamable

Both here

And yet to come.

Pay attention.

Pay Attention.

Here’s to the Bride and Groom!


© Christopher C. MacDonald, 2001.

3 thoughts on “To The Bride and Groom

  1. Italian is polity of nobles,naples,discrimination,protection and survey,nato ei,compat cabble of cados prios ledge,forbidden.MAX

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