They give him a prize, a purpled rose,
for what we once called purple prose.
He overwrites and adds on more
for fear somewhere some herbivore
will miss what he means when he totes
brass-band horns out when he emotes.
I could go on. He would, I’m sure,
but unlike him I am demure.
I hope he’ll catch what I unfold
or, failing that, catch at least a cold.
MEA CULPA: Do you remember the Burma-Shave signs alongside highways, short verses followed by their logo? Two real examples:
‘Hardly a driver / Is now alive / Who passed / On hills / At 75 / Burma-Shave’
‘Ben Met Anna / Made A Hit / Neglected Beard / Ben-Anna Split / Burma-Shave’
And a lampoon version ending with a cartoon of someone’s backside (remembered from Mad Magazine?):
‘If you neglect / your face each day / this is all / we’ve got to say / Burma-Shave’
On a rainy day like this, with storms closing down Heathrow airport, jingly couplets seem to be in the air.