THE NAMING CEREMONY

© Leonie Parker


Winner 2012, ‘Urban Country Music Festival’, Caboolture, Queensland.


They didn’t want a Christening but had to name the child

so instead they threw a party but it got a little wild.

The parents of the baby weren’t the ones behind the fuss,

or the far flung country cousins who all came in on the bus.


Most people in attendance had no cause to really know

how delicate the situation was around this show

and neither did the celebrant they hired to do the deed.

She just turned up with her microphone and all the forms she’d need.


The trouble started when those forms were set out to be signed

by witnesses and family but places weren’t defined

as clearly as they might have been and something went awry.

The signatures (now out of place) caused all the hue and cry.


Because the places where the signatures were meant to be

were only marked with crosses you could almost guarantee

that somebody would get it wrong and that is what ensued

resulting in the stoush that resurrected an old feud.


The baby had grandparents who were not wed anymore

and Nana had a new man no one ever met before,

but the ‘other woman’ was now married to her ex.

Relationship dynamics nowadays are quite complex.


The mixing up of signatures, the cause of all the strife,

now had the ‘other woman’ down as Nana’s new man’s wife,

and Nana shouted loudly to her poor embarrassed son

“Stone the crows, and strike me roan, she’s pinched another one!”


The guests all tittered nervously, hoped it would go away,

but Nana wasn’t finished yet she still had more to say.

“Am I a bloomin’ shopping mall with husbands in me range

and a sign that says “No refunds, - but happy to exchange?”


The ‘other woman’ took offence and lunged for Nana’s hair

but Nana was too quick for her and was no longer there

when gravity took over and she fell on Uncle Bruce,

then Aunty Mary got involved and all hell soon broke loose.


Nana sunk the boot in when the ‘other woman’ fell

and Choppa the Rottweiler got into the act as well.

Somewhere in among the snapping teeth and flying feet

we think that Granddad’s fluffy dog escaped into the street.


When the stoush was over and the party put to rest

it all looked pretty obvious who came off second best.

Nana had no injuries, not even one small scratch.

When it comes to fighting she has never met her match.


Grandad and the ‘other woman’ limped away off home.

We couldn’t find their Shih Tzu but we think it tends to roam.

Nana cleaned up Choppa’s face removing all the fluff

and said she’s sure the missing pup will turn up soon enough.


Many of the party guests were scratched and bruised as well

but toddled off home happily with quite a tale to tell.

The telephones ran hot for weeks, the family closed ranks,

but those of us still standing drank a toast and we gave thanks.


You can upset Nana if you’re feeling pretty game.

All you have to ask is how the baby got his name.

Nana’s chin will jut out and she’ll give a haughty sniff,

and that’s why we all call my little baby brother ‘Biff’.

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