Lucy Vickery

An ode for Theresa May: Spectator poetry competition winners

An ode for Theresa May: Spectator poetry competition winners
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There was a good response to the call for poems on a political theme entitled ‘May day’ but the mood was overwhelmingly bleak despite the efforts of a relentlessly optimistic few, Tim Raikes and Alanna Blake among them. There was much to admire though, including a neat riff from Frank McDonald on Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 — ‘Shall Maggie be compared to Theresa May/ Who is more cautious and more temperate?’, a ‘Jabberwocky’-inspired submission from Andrew Bamji and Alex Lynford’s clever Blakean turn. Nicholas Hodgson, Martin John, George Simmers, G.M. Davis, John Whitworth and Michael Copeman were on top form too.

The winners are printed below and earn their authors £30 apiece. The extra fiver is Alan Millard’s.

Alan Millard

It might be wise to celebrate Theresa May’s success,

Thought Boris, pouring mayonnaise upon his watercress;

The wily, erstwhile London Mayor was keen to make amends

For mayhem caused by mishaps past that duly riled his friends.

It could, mayhap, be politic to flatter her with praise

In lieu of Mayday chaos he’d create in future days.

If angered she would crush him like a May bug underfoot

And, short-lived as a mayfly, his career would go kaput.

He’d laud her as a maya blessed with supernatural might

Or the maypop’s passion flower fruit that tastes of pure delight.

He’d moot a day of maying and afford the realm a chance

To salute her coronation with a festive maypole dance

And thereby crown her May queen, the epitome of style,

The Mayfair shoe shop maven and repentant Europhile.

Thus, by his canny, cunning plan he’d cause no more dismay,

And, maybe, as Prime Minister, be in her shoes one day.

Martin Parker

She sets a maypole in the street

outside Hell’s own front door

and friends crowd round to find what treat

their May day has in store.

To many she gives ribbons, plus

a smile that scarce conceals

the cold, Home Counties Borgia

in her steel-tipped kitten heels.

Her nod then sets them dancing

with the confidence of hope

as the maypole turns to gibbet

and each ribbon to a rope.

And soon the heartless crowds pass by

and mock each wretched soul

that hangs there in the ribbons

woven tightly round her pole.

W.J. Webster

It was Theresa and her axe,

With a hey and a ho and a no Georgie O,

Who felled with the speed of lumberjacks,

In the spring time, the many changes ring time

When May is queen and courtiers court her

And mayhem means political slaughter.

So those around her pay respect;

With a hey and a ho and the Gove had to go,

And practise being circumspect

In the spring time, the let the changes ring time

When May is queen and gives no quarter

But might reward a staunch supporter.

There was one joker in her pack

With a hey and a ho and a Bo-Joey show

To leave the pundits taken aback

In the May time, the making early hay time.

Bill Greenwell

Help me! On our battle bus,

Theresa was not ‘one of us’.

I now concede her, she’s my leader.

But how to prove I’m loyal? Discuss.

SOS! When I applaud

The new PM, if I’m ignored,

I’m out of joint. Her brownie points, sir —

How may I add some to my hoard?

Erk! In my Blue Army Fraktion,

TM is not the main attraction.

What aims and vows should I espouse

To save me from a labefaction?

Succour, please! I was an Outer,

And she was Inner. Should I doubt her?

Why don’t I choose to say J’accuse?

Or is she Matron (if devouter)?

Max Ross

May day, May day, Corbyn’s coming,

Sell your shares and buy up gold;

Leave your mansions, take to slumming,

Britain’s sinking, truth be told.

May day, May day, Labour’s losing

Any dignity it had;

You are in for revelations

If you thought that Blair was bad.

May day, May day, Corbyn’s winning,

Worzel Gummidge is a king.

Is this Parliament we’re seeing

Or a psychiatric wing?

May day, May day, come back Gordon,

Save your ship from going down.

Pantomime’s the Opposition

And its leader is a clown.

John Sutherland wrote a book called Orwell’s Nose. Let’s have a poem about a body part of an author of your choosing. Please email entries of up to 16 lines to lucy@spectator.co.uk by midday on 17 August.