Yo, Bacchus!

Yo, Bacchus, when the twining vines

Curl round our knees in twirling lines

And purring panthers draw your car

Triumphant up outside a bar

And all clink glasses, raise them high

As sunset spreads across the sky

And you high five with all the folk

In leopardskin, and share a joke

With flowers peeping through your hair

And smile with parted lips, I’m there!

I’ll fill the cups with ruby wine,

Push up your shades, dear god divine,

Here, on the edge of summer night

All raise a glass and pledge delight.


But Bacchus, do not tempt us down

Into the winecup where we drown

Let us set glasses down, I plead

And not go on where wine is need

And days without are bleak and cold

Empty of hope, and all we hold

Poured in the cup and poured away

Til drunkeness devours our day

And all we could have grown to be

Emptied in you and lost to me…


Yo, Bacchus, help us drink and stop

Fill up our winecup to the top

In happiness and not in pain

To drink it once, and not again.

Yo, smiling Bacchus, turn your face

Be kind to us, and lend us grace:

Teach us to drink without disaster

And be our friend, and not our master.


February 20th 2018, on a train between Provo and Chicago.