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The prize was not the tallest tree
But straightness in each branch,
So all the help that nature gave
The cooper could enhance.

With water, iron ring and skill
The staves were made and bent;
The cask became a living thing
With wine its main intent.

But taking flavour from the wine
Was only just the start;
With juices from the malted grain
It was to play its part.

Left over time, a job well done
With spirit in its care,
The boughs that once reached up to God
Released the angels' share.

The wood has given all it could
Since it was first bespoke.
So, raise a glass and toast the seed
That grew into an oak.