Poems of the Week

A Monarch’s Purse

by Mike Mesterton-Gibbons

“Paddington Bear joins Queen Elizabeth II for tea at Buckingham Palace”

A queen—whose servants serve to satisfy
Ma’am’s every whim—need never carry cash
Or Kleenex: Though there’s nothing she can’t buy,
No subject asks for cash, it lacks panache,
And even if queens blew their noses, and
Reportedly they don’t, a footman would
Come leaping with a hanky in his hand …
Her Majesty, we long have understood,
Scarce needs her purse, but brings it nonetheless,
Perplexing us for decades. What is holed
Up in it? Gin? The Racing Post? Each guess
Remained just that. But now the secret’s told:
She hides a royal sandwich—freshly made
Elizabethan bread and marmalade!