Wedding Wine

Six stone jars stand before me I cannot see.

The jars are empty, like me. Spent. Used, their service completed; quickly forgotten, a ritual prelude to the Main Show.

I stand blind and bored, waiting, detached to joyful shouts and festive dancing filling the night, a celebration not my own.

Suddenly, a woman appears beside me, whispering to her son, “They have no more wine.”

The son protests, “Why involve me?”

Undeterred, the woman turns to me, “Do whatever he tells you.”

My sympathy is with the son. Why me? This is not my party. Not my time.

Then our gazes meet, the son and me. Tilting head toward empty jars, he says quietly, “Fill them to the brim.”

I frown, but obey this mother and son, hauling water one-gallon at time, filling jars 30 buckets tall.

The son watches, knowing my resentment.

 “Now draw some water out,” he says, “and take it to the banquet master.”

Reluctantly, I obey, wondering how I will answer the inevitable questions.

The banquet master looks at me puzzled, takes the ladle of water. I shrug and turn my eyes. He drinks, and a waft of aged wine awakes my soul.