Labour leader Chris Hipkins. Photo: David Williams

Chip Flop

The Lost Mountains of Oblivion are cold.

Cold as the gaze of withered love

From a faithless electorate.

Here on the 26.91 Latitude,

In the Land of Eternal Night,

A pitiful scene: a shadowed cave lit only

By a smouldering fire of dried yak droppings.

Jagged spikes of ice sprout

From the whiskers of Exiled King Chipkins.

Lost are the armies of Loyal Serfs,

Lost are his Proud Lords and Preening Courtiers,

All fallen to the House of Blue,

Who have seized the throne in distant Kings Landing.

The Ex-King is deep in meditation,

And hands a sheet of parchment

To Dave, Thane of Parker.

What’s this? enquires the morose Thane.

It’s a blank sheet, says the One Time King,

A clean slate for new ideas for our campaign.

Write anything you want! Blue sky thinking!

The Thane hands back the parchment.

On it, his words in large inked script:


This sounds like a good idea,

Says King Chipkins with a gleam in his eye.

Sound the trumpets! Grease the swords!

Prepare to March on King’s Landing!

Dave, Thane of Parker, stares in dismay.

O King, he says, the hour has passed;

Our armies scatter’d, our hopes dash’d

On the fierce rocks of the Captain’s Call –

The war is lost.

Victor Billot has previously felt moved to write Odes to Mark Mitchell, Winston Peters, and David Seymour.

Victor Billot is a Dunedin writer.

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