In Competition No. 3003 you were invited to supply clerihews about contemporary politicians. In an enormous and excellent entry, popular rhymes included ‘charmer’ and ‘Starmer’; ‘Boris’ and ‘Horace’; ‘Sturgeon’ and ‘burgeon’; ‘Corbyn’ and ‘absorbing’. Putin likes to ‘put the boot in’, apparently, and that David Davis is, by common consent, a ‘rara avis’.
There was much to admire and it was tricky to sift the best from the merely good. Those that made the cut are printed below and earn their authors £8 each. Commiserations to the rest.
Has been grilled, gutted and gammoned
And got porridge poured over his wee bit of glory
By a big evil Tory.
Rises and falls:
They say he’s a Blairite
Is one of the (small) magic circle
Whose country rates ’em
But is Ian Paisley junior
No longer holds sway —
For seeing off Corbyn and his iffy cult
Proved too BLOODY DIFFICULT.
Looks like a great North American leader, although,
To be fair, the guy next door
Has made that easier than it was before.
To where has Diane Abbot Got?
‘No idea,’ said Theresa,
Glancing at her freezer.
Is far richer than me,
But to seem ordinary,
She goes by Thornberry.
Couldn’t be glummer.
It’s not much fun
Being John Selwyn’s son.~
Made not a single blooper,
In the election campaign, reckoning it wiser to be invisible
Is a Thunderer sprog:
But his manner is less irate
And he lives in 1798.
Is considered in the future tense
Resembles a lump
Of misshapen fat
Topped by an overweight bottle-blond rat.
Squares a circle by producing a squircle:
As her party trick
It seems to click.
Would never choose
‘Should I dye my hair auburn?’
Asks Jeremy Corbyn,
‘Or should it be red
Is a would-be political surgeon
Who’d gladly effect a wee
Waits in suspense,
Hoping that they’ll dump
Wears suits made of dacron.
OK, I made that up, but President Macron’s chief crime
Is that he doesn’t rhyme.
Thinks that Scotland needs purgin’,
She can’t wait to see the backs
Of the Sassenachs.
No. 3006: laughing matter
You are invited to submit a sonnet that takes as its opening line Keats’s ‘Why did I laugh tonight? No voice will tell:’. Please email entries, wherever possible, to email@example.com by midday on 5 July.
Subscribe to The Spectator Australia today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Subscribe – Try a month free