NO matter what vile and twisted fate befalls England following the General Election as it advances towards its Brexit apocalypse she has at least bequeathed to us an exquisite treasure trove of art and culture for us to remember her by. The literary output of Monkhouse, Morecambe and Cooper will endure for eternity to remind us of a merrier England while the melodies of Plant, Gillan and Kilmister recall a gentler and kinder time in her history. On this day in which England sets sail for a destiny unknown I’m happy to present to you a wee ode inspired by one of its lesser-known wordsmiths.


HOW a country having passed the point of no return was driven by scoundrels to the cold Country of Isolation towards a perpetual state of fear and loathing; and how from thence she made her course to the tropical Latitude of the Cayman Islands; and of the strange things that befell; and in what manner the Ancyent Brexiteer shunn’d reason and charity.

With apologies to the family and estate of Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834)

It is an ancient Brexiteer,

And he stoppeth pork and brie.

With coupon puce and witt’ring lies,

Was e’er one posh’r than he?

For Eton’s doors were opened wide,

For his stout, anointed kin;

The guests are met, the feast is set:

‘Ne’er foreign chap ich bin’

His cane he held with skinny hand,

His lips seem’d drained of blood

His neck didst glint with brasso

And good folk yelled ‘What a fud!’

He holds you with his watery eye—

Like a Wedding-Guest all howlin’,

‘We mustn’t let the French forget

Or the Germans get their towels in’.

Oh Albion, oh land so fair

You once broke Hitler’s barrage

Why now permit the jackboots

Of Robinson and Farage?

Beloved green and pleasant land,

Now lonely as a cloud

Replacing truth and beauty

And kindness with a shroud

And now this ancient Brexiteer

Of England strong and stable

Did not thou preach of fealty

And reject the Tower of babel?

Was Dulce et Decorum est

Your Eton recitation?

Your pure Pro Patria Mori

A fanfare for this nation?

In Flanders fields the poppies bow

In sweet, silent adoration

A witness to the sacrifice

Of a golden generation

Drums beat slowly, fifes play lowly

Fields shine with poppies’ raiment

The deeds of heroes now betrayed

By Brexit’s shrill lament

We venerated Passchendale

And the sweet rebuke of Spitfires

Yet now forsake once loyal friends

In the flames of Brexit’s pyres

You hatched your lies and stratagems

Reviled Turks and NHS

In shady Caribbean havens,

Dark profits of the ERS

Then enter right your blond Messiah

Your bumbling Enfield gig’lo

This Central Office Pennywise

This concupiscent buff’lo

To make your dreams of av’rice fly

You poisoned those reviled

With tales of immigration

And xenophobic bile

The Ancient Brexiteer proceeds

And good folk peer beneath

This cursed brew; this toil and trouble

Of England’s Brexit heath

To slake your greedy, corp’rate donors

Your tax-shy acolytes

You beat a path from decency

And sacred human rights

In Scotia bides a canny breed

Still seeking bright redemption

They’re battle-harden’d to the fibs

Of Brexit’s spun deception

Those stubborn and rebellious Scots

Ne’er quite know when they’re beaten

At once both thrawn and faithful

And ever European

This land has been a haven

For immigrants and races

Providing truth and succour

In its bleak and pure, safe spaces

While England yearns to expedite

A boot to Europe’s jacksie

The Scots know well the Union’s dead

Enough! Let’s hail a taxi

It is an ancient Brexiteer

And he seeks a backstop greasy

By the light of Ulster’s bonfires

He conjured something sleazy

No depths exist he won’t descend

To quench the banker’s whim

No avenues go unexplored

In sev’ring Britain’s limb

He told those Lords ‘I won’t obey,

You’ll pay a price right heavy!’

Round Bercow’s chair his zealots throng’d

All howling with the bevvy

‘If families have to go without,

If stricken patients wither,

Twas European perfidy

That made me not deliver.

But listen not to those foul fiends

Don’t let your spirits sicken

In yonder sea a ship’s jam packed

With chlorinated chicken

In Africa where once we roamed

And oil-soaked southern Asia

We’ll build a trading company

And drain them at our pleasure

It is an ancient Brexiteer

Some thought him double-wide

Yet in his desiccated soul

A hard resolve did bide

‘The false accusers of Remain

May don their gilets-jeune

But never fear, I’ll smite them all,

With water-jets and guns’

And lo it came to pass indeed

That Britain rued her folly

Sold by Bullingdon’s elite

On a sea of vintage Bolly

Ah! well a-day! what evil looks

Had I from old and young!

Instead of the cross, the Albatross

Round Britain’s neck was hung.