Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Sad but [Mostly] True Poem

My husband the preacher so solemn and tall
Wears his suit every Sunday to preach from the Word
He’s had it for years and it’s gray, made of wool
Conservative, durable, far from absurd.

But despite all his caution the pants became worn
And finally developed a hole in the seat.
Like a good Christian wife I attempted to mend
But there was no way I could make it look neat.

Since the jacket was also too worn to keep wearing,
“We need to go shopping,” we said to each other,
“But how can our Mennonite conscience allow
Us to go to the trouble of buying another?”

For all of our children are still very single
And there is no wedding for which to prepare!
How else can we justify such an investment?
Yet neither to preach without suit would he dare.

So we headed to town and went hunting at Sears
Where only two offerings hung on the rack.
“The tan’s too flamboyant for Mennonite tastes,
And all of my dandruff will show on the black.”

We drove to Mr. Formal where the ties were all pink
And all the lapels were shiny with satin.
“Don’t think so,” we said, united in purpose,
 And drove to the mall while romantically chattin.’

At last what a treasure of suits was before us.
Surely the right one was here for the finding.
But this one was corduroy and that one too short,
And that one too Baptist. Too gangster.  Too binding.

This looks used-car-salesman and that one's too skinny
For middle-aged middles that tend to expand.
This one is nice but it’s oh so expensive
And that one’s lapels have that odd extra band.

A jacket was perfect in texture and shade
But "Sorry, this line was changed for the season
I’ll check on my iPhone if your size is in back.
Nope, not a one, can’t tell you the reason."

Two proper jackets we finally found.
To find matching pants we set off on a quest.
Do they think every man in this town is a dwarf,
As all of the inseams are 30 or less.

With sinking of heart, Paul tried on what we had
And nothing was suitable; all our work bore no fruit.
So we hung up the garments and faced our defeat,
And the Mennonite minister still has no suit.


  1. I love it. Better luck next time. In today's lingo, you two rock. :) ~Luci~

  2. Perhaps you could look at Goodwill or a thrift store. My dad (also a pastor) found a very expensive, quiet, almost-new tweed jacket for about five dollars. And some of my friends have even found even wedding-worthy suits at Goodwill for less than 15 dollars.

    (And your poem was really good.)

  3. I love your sense of humor. My dad wears suits all the time; I'll check to see where he gets his stash.

  4. oh no! I HATE shopping like this! (but your poem is great - some consolation, eh?)

  5. come East and shop at Goods....they have racks of good Mennonite suits...or doesn't it matter if it has the "plain" collar?
    Better yet, plan a wedding.

  6. "Nothing was suitable." Ha ha, I see what you did there.

  7. My husband recently bought a very nice suit, originally from Nordstroms, at the Goodwill on River Road.

  8. I just had a suit tailor made here in Chiang Mai. The next time you come to Thailand you should take Paul to the New Moda Tailor shop at the night bazaar. You can choose from about 100 different fabrics and have it tailor made to fit him. And all that for a very reasonable cost. It was all done in about 3 days.