the weekly

The Fourth Wise Man

We have come to our census.
Halo, halo. No room at the inn:
we should have booked online.
Fine. There is a stable,
a straw, and a baby cocktail.
Here are some shepherds,
with flock wallpaper, and a bunch
of crooks. Selling sheep cheap:
Jesus, show us a leg of lamb.
Is that a star? Is that a star?
It has star quality. It follows.
It shines. It has sat-nativity,
Here's a manger: what's stranger,
it comes with instructions
in Hebrew. And a matching crib,
to assist you with answers.
And here is one bad ass.

Four wise men. The first one
says, how many carats, madam?
The second has (and this is to be
frank) incense. The third
has no myrrh to say. 'No myrrh.'
The fourth has Red Bull.
It is canned, like laughter.
Here is my teddy bear. Teddy.
Or as we like to call him, Judas.
Judas, his carry-cot. Ha ha ha.
Let's all go to the department store
of the after-Christmas sales: Herod's.
Everything must go. Snap up our
Apostle spoons. Here is the latest
barn conversion: one bent shekel
for every original brick,
or timber. No offence? No: a fence.

News story in The Scotsman

The Fourth Wise Man
Father Marco Damanti has persuaded the Red Bull drinks company to withdraw a TV ad in which a fourth wise man arrived at Bethlehem with a can of Red Bull. “The sacred family has been represented in a sacrilegious way,” said Father Damanti. Gillian Gibbons was pardoned in Sudan, and flown home, after a week's imprisonment for calling a teddy bear Mohammed at the behest of her class.
5 December 2007


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