On The Birth Of Prince What’s-His-Name
before Carol Ann Duffy
by Kevin Higgins
Receive this boy-child, world,
to pursue him about the pages
of the tabloids and glossies that were
his granny’s premature end.
Under the sign of the Express,
and Nicholas Witchell of the BBC, we conspire
for him a life of turning up to declare
things that would’ve opened or closed anyway
open or closed. We beseech the gathered
spirits of Fanny Craddock,
Lord Denning, and Sir Patrick Moore
that he exhibit no more
fascist sympathies than absolutely necessary,
and no more casual hatred of the Irish
than the late Princess Margaret.
Oh ghosts of Edmund Burke
and Lady Jane Birdwood we beg
you allow the mob disturb not one follicle
on this particular head; and ensure he’s never led
down to the basement by Bolsheviks,
even in the unlikely event of a Labour government
that actually keeps its promises.
We ask God, as Michael Heseltine and
Julia Hartley Brewer understand him,
to arrange for this child a life
of tennis, polo
and knowing as little as possible.