Ruminative bard Victor Billot on the Boy Prince

The Masqued Man

Hark! Trumpets! Entrance stage left,
from the prickly undergrowth,
The Boy Prince, Christopher of Orange,
appeareth in hose and doublet.
The Queendom of Kindness is in disarray.
Many Ministers of State lurketh in the woods.
No longer does the Boy Prince spread his legs
to wander the leafy glades of summer;
his mellifluous soliloquies are pearls before swine,
cast before the snapping jackals of Grub Street.
“Boy Prince!” holler the press pack.
“The merchants gripe bitterly
at their masques – while the tavern keepers
rejoice at their unmuzzling!
What street lamp do we tarry under?
Carmine? Or Chartreuse? Or Amber?
What gives, Princey?”
The courtiers and wizards and surgeons
confer in urgent committee down the back.
“Any magickal solutions O wise fellows?”
whispers the Boy Prince.
The National Sorcerer attempts to conjure
a rabbit out of a hat, but instead a dead duck
falls from the firmament with a heavy thud.
“Lo, there are no magickal solutions,” says the Boy Prince.
He points to the feathered carcass.
“But the trend is pointing downwards.”
So it was decreed:
masques are still required in emporiums
and haberdasheries; and on passenger mules
and the rude sixteen wheeler carts of the yeomanry;
but will no longer be required at low taverns
or swill pens of ill repute.
“Are the gin-soaked apprentices and their strumpets
permitted to pash in the nightclubs?”
demand the inky scribblers.
“Most certainly,” confirms the Boy Prince.
“For who am I to stand in the way
of the proud traditions of our Queendom?”
And the halls and dank lanes of Queens Landing
resounded with huzzahs and merriment;
for life was, indeed, returning to normal.

Victor Billot has previously felt moved to compose Odes for such luminaries as Ashley Bloomfield, Clarke Gayford, Centurion Andronicusthe Prime Sinister, Brian Tamaki, Dr Siouxsie Wiles, and Garrick Tremain.

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