“Isn’t it the worst thing ever when you’re expecting milk and you drink water?”

It’s true enough to taste that surprise in my mouth
When it’s mentioned,
And it always comes as a surprise, for example,
When our water contrarily turns into wine
And a Messiah trashes our money-tables.
Surprises should laugh:
Small stomach earthquakes,
Oddness with oddity paired.

Lightning: another surprise.
We look to the darkness, clouds looming like Sinais:
And the chilling night-shroud cracks in blazing glory:
Green and orange and yellow and purple.
I always laugh and shout
When I see a bolt burn the air
And split firmament,
And feel the air tremble while the angels
Do their dancing.

The pagans were saddened from lack of surprise,
Laughter-lack; grim ironies and satire
Bittered their mouths.
See, they never expected the comedy
To be deep.
They never find what Shakespeare found,
That the man did not drown,
That the Devil’s tail was pulled over his eyes,
That weddings come in threes.
And infinite surprise, the best,
When tombs hold living kings,
Who turn out not to be gardeners
After all.


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