The return of the Odes by Victor Billot

The Boy King Sails North

The Coronation had taken place.

King’s Landing had celebrated wildly for two weeks.

Now it was time, said the Court Advisors,

for new King Chipboard to get down to royal duties.

A message in a bottle had arrived from the City of Auk,

pleading for assistance in their hour of need,

so the King ordered the Ensign to be run up the mast;

and thus the Royal Dreadnought steamed north.

Eventually they stopped by a lonely buoy

poking out of the endless water

‘that lay flat and still in all directions.

“When do we get to Auk?” Queried the Boy King.

“Lo, your Majesty – we are indeed in the City of Auk,”

replied his Navigator in Chief.

“This buoy is in fact the former Sky Tower.”

Just then, a large solid gold catamaran swung by

and loomed over the Royal Dreadnought.

“Who sails there?” stammered the Boy King.

There on the deck, in Trelise Cooper leisure wear,

lounged The Lady of the Lake, Kate of Hawkesby.

King Chipboard swallowed.

“O Lady, what has become of the once mighty City of Auk?

What devastation has befallen its sorry burghers?

A typhoon? A waterspout? A deluge?”

The Lady glared down, and firmly stamped

on the hand of a bedraggled old man

with a tennis racquet attempting to clamber onboard.

“What are you talking about?” she snapped.

“Does it look like it’s raining?

This is the namby pamby fear mongering

woke nonsense turning this once Great Kingdom

into …”

As the sound of The Lady’s voice droned on,

the Boy King sighed and stared out

over the endless expanse of water.

A pokie machine floated past,

bobbing dejectedly in the Great Lake of Auk.

Victor Billot’s Ode resumes its appearance every Sunday at ReadingRoom now the silly season is over. He has previously felt moved to compose Odes for such luminaries as Bishop Brian, the former Prime Minister, Mike Hosking, and Garrick Tremain.

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