The dinner plates of old England
are forever under threat
by foreign foes of every hue
from Capsicum to Courgette.
Since the Romans brought zucchini
to plant roots in English soil
invaders from around the world
have come, soaked in olive oil.
Tomaters from Armenia,
Perfidious papist mange-tout peas?
'taters from Virginia
They gave us schizophrenia.
The zestful, sneering citrus fruits
with their gaudy, ghastly skins
give native apples a complex but
the fightback now begins.
Mangol Wurzel warriors, warlords
of the noble turnip clan
marshal radishes, parsnips, beets;
plumed carrots march in our van.
We will ally our armies with
hoards of stately English greens,
make kitchen gardens safe again
for honest native beans.
Hark to the hungry Englishman,
and heed his famished shouts
We'll send the phlegms back to Brussels,
they can keep their sprouts
We shall drive out the offcomer,
no compote or julienne,
but steaming hunks of boiled grey gunk,
food fit for Xenophon.
Copyright? I'm not fool enough to put my name to this in public:- Ian Thorpe, 11 May 2004.
A Mangol Worzel (closely related to scarecrow Worzel Gummidge) is a large, coarse fleshed turnip or rutabaga, staple food of the peasantry before being usurped by the potato, pasta, rice and all those other Johnny Foreigner types. Hereward was an Anglo Saxon hero who led resistance to the occupying Normans in the years following the conquest of 1066. You may note, none of your fancy latinate forms or French fripperies here, good solid Anglo Saxon ballad meter only.
In case my American readers are not familiar with Brussels sprouts, these dreaded vegetables, harbingers of euphonic farting if not cooked properly, are like tiny cabbages and are a tradition for our Christmas dinners. They should be sliced thinly with sweet chestnuts, tossed in soy sauce and a little cumin and coriander and stir fried for mouth watering results but most English women insist in putting them whole in a pan of boiling water on Halloween and simmering 'til December 25th.
Britishness For Dummies
Fear and Panic and HP Sauce
The Dinner Plates of Old England by Hereward the Worzel