Royal Trouper

Margaret stands in for her big sister
at the Sovereign’s Parade at Sandhurst.
She would rather dance to her transistor
radio than stand stiff, with flu unnursed,
as newly-minted subalterns march past
stamping their polished boots. A cold wind blows
that makes her shiver with fever. Oh blast,
an unsightly dewdrop drips from her nose.
Photographers snap this unlikely gem
clinging like a stalactite to her beak.
She ignores the unwelcome diadem
as onlookers resist the urge to speak.
Afterwards she sips remedial wine
and decides royal duty is a swine.

Richard Foster
November 2016

Working as a news agency reporter in the early 1980s, I saw Princess Margaret take the salute during a Sovereign’s Parade at Sandhurst. She was nursing a heavy cold, but the royal trouper stuck to her guns rather than cry off.

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Author: rjefoster

I am a budding musician and poet hoping to bloom.

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