Harrendous, A Poem For Michael Mainelli’s Stag Night, 3 May 1996

I wrote this parody poem for Michael Mainelli’s stag night, which was held on Rupert Stubbs’ barge in Chiswick.

A rare example of a piece I wrote and performed myself; given the cosy audience and their state at the time of the recitation, unsurprisingly it went down rather well.

HARRENDOUS
One of the most godawful lays made about the city MCMXCVI
(A poem not entirely dissimilar to Horatius by Lord Macaulay)

VERSE 1

Liz Lizbetchen, she of Chiswick
By the sauerkraut she swore
That the great house of Franken
Should suffer wrong no more.
By the sauerkraut she swore it,
And named a wedding day,
And bade her messengers set sail,
Letters, faxes, calls and e-mail,
To summon her array.

VERSE 2

Letters, faxes calls and e-mail
She let them know real fast,
In hamlet, town and cottage
And little places you’d drive past.
Shame on the false Etreusscan
Who lingers at the stalls,
When Lizbetchen of Chiswick
Has Michael by the balls.

VERSE 3

Now from the dock St Katherine’s
Could young Mainelli spy
The line of blazing bridesmaids
Across the midnight sky.
The buddies of Mainelli,
They sat all night and day,
For every hour some faxes came
With tidings of dismay.

VERSE 4

To London and to Franken
Have spread the Reusscan bands
Nor house, nor fence, nor dovecote
Unrenovated stands.
Bayswater down to Bishopsgate
Hath wasted in a dash;
Our Liz has stormed through Selfridges
And spent shitloads of cash.

VERSE 5

They held a council standing
Before the River Thames;
Short time was there, ye well may guess,
To stop him buying gems.
Out spake the Verschoyle roundly:
“That Liz must great go down;
Mainelli’s sense is truly lost,
We might as well rave on down.”

VERSE 6

Then out spake brave Harrendous,
The one from Michael’s firm:
“To every man upon this earth
Wedlock cometh like a germ.
And how can a man wed better
Than pissed as a bloody fart
Cos he’ll still be window shopping
For a fresh bit of jam tart.

VERSE 7

So start the rave Sir Rupie,
With all the speed ye may;
I with two more to help me,
Will get on down, way hay.
The legal limit of a thousand
May well be drunk by three.
Now who will stand on either hand
And get well pissed with me?

VERSE 8

Then out spake Lucas Clementus;
A boating man proud was he:
“Yo, I will stand at thy right hand,
And get well pissed with thee.”
Then out spoke Ricardus Sealyus,
Of filming man fame was he:
“I will abide on thy left side,
And get well pissed with thee.”

VERSE 9

Then out spake Marcus Schlossmanus,
A photographer proud and tall:
“Don’t mind if I do have a quick jar or two,
Until I’m senseless and I fall.”
Then out spake Julius Mountainous,
A friend from firms gone by:
“I’ll knock them back, build up a stack,
I can drink this damned barge dry.”

VERSE 10

Then out spake Rupius Stubbsius,
A Saatchi man by trade:
“Just hold it a tick with your big swinging dicks,
This is my party I’m afraid.
For stags at stag nights quarrel
Spared either girl or dame,
No maids, no duff, no bits of fluff,
Not even one that’s on the game.

VERSE 11

Imbibers oh imbibers!
It’s Michael we must drown,
A bachelor but a few days left,
So just shut up and party on down.”
So he spake and speaking sheathed
(tho “why sheathed” in this company? doesn’t it make you think??)
And with his wineglass in his hand
Plunged headlong in the drink.

VERSE 12

Years later, you’ll not remember
Much about that night gone by;
But you’ll recall the week of migraine
And that month of sustained red eye.
With weeping and with laughter
You’ll tell the stories right,
How well Mainelli held his drink,
On Michael’s wild stag night.

If you want to know what Horatius At The Bridge by Lord Macaulay actually reads like, click here for the poem. Trigger warning: if you think my parody version is too long, I wouldn’t try reading all 600 or so lines of the original.

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