The Winemaker

He rises early

The winemaker…

The vessels to be prepared.

With arms surly

The barrel he’ll take her

With the others to compare.


Back and forth he rocks her

She’s washed clean with such care.

So Carefully

The wire he lowers

Suffer that burns without air


Cleaned is every corner

Her treasure ready to bear.


Calling the sleeper

Wake up! Come help if you dare.


The children hear

And come running down the stair.


He moves her

The vessel completely bare.


He steadies her

Ready to receive wine so rare.


Scarlet colored

To heaven he lifts his prayer.


To the center

Of her heart the wine does tear.


He fills her

With treasure she was made to bear.


Surely I am her

Christ in you,

the Winemaker.

Bodega Bay

D'Angelo Roma, Italia

Ruby Hill Vineyards

10/2/20 Originally Written 3/30/08 This intimate poem was written for my husband on his 42nd birthday. As I write it out today the layers of meaning are just as evident now as they were then. In this season of preparing for the harvest and the years vintage, Angelo would soak and clean the barrels. I can hear the distinct rhythmic sound of him rocking them, and feel the coolness of the early morning air. I can see his strong hands accomplishing the task and feel the security of following the order of the seasons. As much as it’s a poem about the process of winemaking, it’s an intimate poem about us. Always the profound mystery is how my husband could reflect so deeply and beautifully the love of Christ, as a friend, a father, a lover and a winemaker.