“Big Ben is only the bell,”
You smugly tell,
But actu’lly, we already know.
Except you’re wrong:
It’s the bit that goes bong,
And ev’rything else, above and below.
Big Ben is the bell,
And the clock as well,
And even the whole bloody tower !
Ask any you meet
On Parli’ment Street
Whenever he’s chiming the hour.
Why do ravens always wear black ?
Do they want to blend in with the pack ?
Are they just too shy to be pizzazz ?
Are they just too moody, cool and jazz ?
Why are they dressed in Sunday Best, not tweeds ?
Are they decked in mourning, veiled in widow’s weeds ?
Or are they maybe prison warders ?
Are they priests in holy orders ?
Are they fed’ral agents on the wing ?
Or do they merely want to go with ev’rything ?
Are they goths and metalheads – or maybe simply posh ?
Or are their other feathers in the wash ?
So why is it ravens always wear the black ?
(But if they dressed in mufty, I guess they’d get the sack.)
It wasn’t a planned or a pre-destined course,
But brought on by conquest and culture and chance.
So half of the ears of the world are in reach,
And so many throats are alive to the word.
They flock to our phonemes that stream from our source,
Our syllables speak and their speakers advance;
For held on our tongues is the honey they teach,
That calls to the world and will always be heard.
But just as it rises, so shall this same force
Then favour another to make their tongues dance.
Our moment must pass – then our ripening peach
Shall sour their lips, with its stones spat and slurred.
Yet now all is golden, yet now they endorse
For all of its failings and spellings askance.
So use it and wisely and sweetly in speech,
For as long as its fluke is the fluke that’s preferred.
The beauty of English is all those who seek it
With all of their Anglisized ears.
The whole world is lis’ning, for evil or good,
Our blessing and curse is to be understood.
The beauty of English is ev’ryone speaks it,
The trouble is, ev’ryone hears.
Why just the same old almighty creator ?
Let’s have us a dozen, let’s restate our mission.
We have to deregulate sooner or later,
And open up faith to the free competition.
We must raise the funding and research the data,
To set up a pantheic-forming commission –
We ought to have choice in our heavenly pater
And hire the divine in an open audition
Just think of the deities, wiser and greater,
With freedom to choose of which gods to petition –
They’re building their brand as a hero or traitor,
With two-for-one offers on prayers and remission –
And specialist markets will open to cater:
A Goddess of Love or a Wine-God musician –
And all supervised by the trade regulator,
To see they deliver on sin and perdition.