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Coronation Chicken

December 2022, no. 449

Coronation Chicken

December 2022, no. 449

‘It is tragic how few people ever “possess their souls” before they die … Most people are other people.

Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.’

                                Oscar Wilde, De Profundis


Spare me the black ties

Spare me the oaken attitudes, the platitudes of parliament

Spare me Windsor Castle, the Cinque Ports – Calais even, branded on our hearts

Spare me the Tudors and the Stuarts and the Hanovers and the Windsors

Spare me our vestigial appreciation of history – all those lies

Spare me the hurried, ill-fitting suits of the broadcasters

Spare me the gashed shaves eulogising the regal dead

Spare me the reporter’s incongruous green tie which he will regret until the day he dies,

           like a dropped catch or a faux pas on falling in love

Spare me love

Spare me the own goals of my own formation

Spare me glib aubades of the cynical

Spare me the practised intonation of the mourners

Spare me the duke of Norfolk’s deliberations, grave though they are

Spare me the funeral if you don’t mind – just speed it up!

Spare me, dammit, the vox populi

Sanction hallucinogens, satire, merriment

Imagine the inappropriate – ten days of public polyamory

Spare me the furtive humour of the mourners, the off-camera mockery

Spare me the despair of Spare, the ruthless brittleness of brothers

Spare me Coronation Chicken

Spare me, in the bowels of Christ, the prime ministerial recollections

Spare me, god help us, John Howard OM or whatever he is

          (CREEP – Campaign to Re-Elect the Prime Minister)

Spare me the overhead footage of the purple Bentley bound for the capital

Spare me the honours list, the uncles slaughtered in Flanders

Spare me Aunt Rosemary and her sherried remembrances

Spare me deference, good manners

Above all spare me the impeccable ladies-in-waiting

Bring back Crawfie when she’s needed – all her audacities

Tell us about the crumpets, the naughty French lessons

For god’s sake spare me the Abdication – Uncle David and his ‘ice-veined bitches’

Bring back Wallis! Blessed are the chic!

Spare me the corgis, the pedigrees

Spare me the rumoured infidelities

Spare me the discreet mistresses, the oily-royally correspondents

Spare me the rampant lachrymosity of the subjects

Spare me

Spare me

Spare me

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