Friday, December 11, 2009

Once Upon A Time

Just got back from watching the girlies' school Christmas production - the musical version of Roald Dahl's subversive Cinderella, in which Cinders decides not to marry the handsome prince (because he seems far too keen on chopping people's heads off) and plumps for the local jam-maker instead; quite rightly.

It reminded me a bit of this...

'Any Prince To Any Princess' 

August is coming
and the goose, I'm afraid,
is getting fat.
There have been
no golden eggs for some months now.
Straw has fallen well below market price
despite my frantic spinning
and the sedge is,
as you rightly point out,

I can't imagine how the pea
got under your mattress. I apologize
humbly. The chambermaid has, of course,
been sacked. As has the frog footman.
I understand that, during my recent fact-finding tour of the
Golden River,
despite your nightly unavailing efforts,
he remained obstinately

I hope that the Three Wishes granted by the General
will go some way towards redressing
this unfortunate recent sequence of events.
The fall in output from the shoe-factory, for example:
no one could have foreseen the work-to-rule
by the National Union of Elves. Not to mention the fact
that the court has been fast asleep
for the last six and a half years.

The matter of the poisoned apple has been taken up
by the Board of Trade: I think I can assure you
the incident will not be

I can quite understand, in the circumstances,
your reluctance to let down
your golden tresses. However
I feel I must point out
that the weather isn't getting any better
and I already have a nasty chill
from waiting at the base
of the White Tower. You must see
the absurdity of the
Some of the courtiers are beginning to talk,
not to mention the humble villagers.
It's been three weeks now, and not even
a word.

a cold, black wind
howls through our empty palace.
Dead leaves litter the bedchamber;
the mirror on the wall hasn't said a thing
since you left. I can only ask,
bearing all this in mind,
that you think again,

let down your hair,


- Adrian Henri (RIP).


The show was excellent. And so was the mulled wine. Oh yes it was.

Donna Summer - 'Happily Ever After' (1977) (camp as Christmas)


  1. Lovely stuff, MrH. That was new to me, but I was just reading this the other day.

    I do love mulled wine. And Donna. Thank you.

  2. Thank you my dear - that Brian Patten is lovely. Those Mersey Sound chaps were the first poets that were 'mine' x

  3. Sounds straight out of the Love Boat but then could so easily be Steely Dan/solo Donald Fagin (no Xmas pun intended), errm not the vox obviously..

    Has she ever done a Christmas song, did you know Huggy Bear released one?

    Word Veri ~ essicle (so close)

  4. Ain't never heard one myself Mond.
    You'll provide a link to Huggy I hope? Word on the street is, you know where it's at - Hutch.

  5. I love Adrian Henri. They were my first as well thanks to this:, which we studied at school and then I'm sorry to admit I kept!

  6. They, being Roger, Brian and Adrian that is.

  7. That's the fella. This too. I'll have to pop 'Tonight At Noon' (Henri, not Weller) up soon...

  8. I knew nothing of this jollyjapery wordsmithery.

    I do miss the school productions at this time of year. My daughter is now 14 and living in a parallel universe.

    Anyone with little uns who has trouble 'getting off work' to make the Nativity plays etc should move heaven and earth to attend. It's priceless time you will never get back.

  9. Charming poem, thanks for that. :) And you're right; any sane girl would go for the jam-maker.

  10. Arrived really late for the party on this one?
    Absolutely adore "Adrian Henri’s" spin on the classic fairy tale, I’d not heard of him before, thanks for enlightening me Davy...

    (A clever man, and so sad that he is no longer with us)

  11. Thanks Lil. There are still some cheesy footballs if you fancy one.


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