George Walford: Fulfilling the Order

And the Lord said unto Noah: “Where is the ark which I hast commanded thee to build?” And Noah said unto the Lord: “Verily I have had three carpenters off ill. The wood supplier hath let me down – yea, even though the wood hath been on order for nigh upon 12 months. What can I do, O Lord?”

And God said unto Noah: “I want that ark finished even after seven days and seven nights.” And Noah said: “It will be so.” And it was not so.

And the Lord said unto Noah: “What seemeth to be the trouble this time?” And Noah said unto the Lord: “Mine sub-contractor hath gone bankrupt. The pitch which Thou commandedst me to put on the outside and on the inside of the ark hath not arrived. Lord, I am undone.”

And the Lord grew angry and said: “And what about the animals, the male and the female of every sort that I ordered to come unto thee to keep their seed alive upon the face of the earth?” And Noah said unto the Lord: “They have been delivered unto the wrong address but should arriveth on Friday.”

And the Lord said:”How about the unicorns, and the fowls of the air by sevens?” And Noah wrung his hands and wept, saying: “Lord, unicorns are a discontinued line; thou canst not get them for love nor money. And it hath just been told unto me that the fowls of the air are sold only in half-dozens. Lord, Lord, Thou knowest how it is.”

And the Lord in his wisdom said: “Noah, my son, I knowest. Why else dost thou think I have caused a flood to descend upon the earth?”

(First published in ERA, journal of the Eastern Region of the R.I.B.A.)

from Ideological Commentary 23, July 1986.