I didn’t want to write about
the death of the Queen,
not at all, because I’m torn
between the adored sweet
old lady of 96 that fits our fairy
tale dreams and the faded
sober story of queens and
kings and this goddam system
of Oppression dressed up in
the orderly guise of pomposity.
What is there more to say about her
handshaking smile with dignatories and at
flower shows where she has gone immemorial
to become this safe haven to park all
the best we think of beaming humanity:
in parades, visits, openings, sporting events
and in all the order that we crave in a disorderly
world where disintegration waits around the bend.
But then the Irish blood moves in me and the ghosts
of slavery, cruelty and class rise up to narrate
the hidden history of royalty and its dire past.
Then my thoughts turn to First Nations peoples
ravaged and displaced in the abyss of god-ordained
superiority centred in the halls of the palace itself.
She waits in state, draped in the Imperial State Crown
that stood for Rule Britannia and the bringing of church, culture
and gun to take what was not theirs, to take it all
in the name of Albion, to take it all through death and pain.
But now it is mere fairytale and the echoing past seems faint
and not many hear its voices, just a few who are torn
like me and read and think and wonder if she knew
through her wisened smile what all this appearance really meant.