lament of the Parish
for Mark Rand, to the tune of “When This Bloody War Is Over”
Parish Weekend’s over
I’ll go straight back home to bed,
take an aspirin from the cupboard,
put an icepack on my head.
make a new beginning—
time to put the past behind—
you’d find so much more than Denmark
if you only read my mind.
those lists of St John's’ families—
all the paperwork and bills—
all the days lost from my loved ones —
all those evenings with Joan Hills.
the notices on Sunday
all the nights that I have prayed—
now the Parish Weekend’s over,
still the Sheards haven’t paid.
trials of pairing singles!
O, the tantrums and the glooms!
O, the phone calls after midnight!
O, the lack of single rooms!
I’m used to disappointment,
and I’m use to hope dismayed—
I have learned to hope and suffer
every time that Brentford played.
the Parish Weekend’s over
Never again I say with tears,
but like Steve Redgrave in his rowboat
I’ll see you back in two more years.
Performed at the end of the weekend in September 2000.
Denmark: a reference
to the Saturday
night entertainment where someone played a “mind reading” trick in
everyone was led to think of the answer “
The Sheards haven't paid: This was entirely a shot in the dark, so I was delighted to find out later that at this point the Sheards hadn't paid.
Steve Redgrave won his fifth Olympic gold medal during this weekend, hence this otherwise random reference.