The Holy Roman Empire VS H&H Fried Chicken and Kebabs

a tale of St. Albans

the holy roman empire vs h&h chicken and kebabsTwas the night before Christmas
And all over the town
Nothing was moving
Not a mouse made a sound

And we find our young hero
Sat here by the bar
Merry-making around him
Drinking beer by the jar

The tavern was busy
High spirits abound
And he joins in the singing
And buys the next round

Now Alex was a good Catholic boy
As I’m sure you all can see
And he counted out his blessings
Like beads on a rosary

For even the Pope has a tipple
And the odd glass of port is just fine
So Alex drank the Holy Spirits
With a sip of Communion Wine

For there was no Chance of Damnation
And risking the torments of Hell
Until things began to go badly
It starts with the sound of a bell

That’s last orders please!
Come along ladies, and gentlemen, please!
That’s last orders at the bar!

It was ten minutes before Christmas
Alex lowered his glass
And bidding farewell to his companions
He set off to Midnight Mass

He cheerily strolled along churchwards
Wrapped tightly in his scarf
With the tiniest sway and a stumble
Tapdancing round snails on the path

But as Alex took the forty steps
A temptation came his way
The smell of grease and cooking meat
Made his attentions go astray

Meat glistened and spun on its pillar
Burgers sizzled upon the flame grill
The scent of onions filled his senses
And gave our young hero a thrill

He eyed up the tubs of chillis
The sensation was divine
And it happened on this very evening
He put his immortal soul on the line.

The chicken was thrown on the griddle
Whilst flames burned under like hell
And for the second time that evening
There rang out the sound of a bell

You want salad?
O María, Virgo et Mater sanctíssima
Chilli sauce?
ecce suscépi dilectíssimum Fílium tuum
Lettuce?
quem immaculáto útero tuo concepísti
Mayonnaise?
genuísti, lactásti atque suavíssimis
Garlic Mayo?
ampléxibus strinxísti. Ecce, cuius aspéctu
You want warm pitta bread?
laetabáris et ómnibus delíciis replebáris

No thunderbolt ever struck Alex
And he watched Gokan cooking instead
Who trans-substantiated Rubicon
And broke the pitta bread

Alex never got to church that night
Though goodwill was wished to all men
And after his hot chicken feasting
He never went in there again

But he waits for that day of judgement
When the last of the seals is broke
When the whore and the horsemen go riding
When all is fire, and brimstone, and smoke

For only then will he discover
If he has an immortal soul
Or if it turns out that he sold it
For an H & H chicken roll.

——————————————————————————–

I’m aware I haven’t posted anything on here for ages. I’ve been busy writing a screenplay for the last few months, but I’ve hopefully got some new poems coming up in the new year as well. In the meantime, here’s a very old Christmas poem that I wrote back in 2009. It’s a true story and describes my friend Alex‘s loss of faith due to deep fried delights. The only stretch of poetic license is that I think Alex was actually a vegetarian by this point and so would have probably have got a falafel from H&H rather than a chicken roll. But given that he once said “Wrap me up in pitta bread! Cover me in lettuce and mayonnaise! I want to be a chicken roll!”, I think it’s ok. The illustration at the top is by Rosanne Ruby Elkins Bushnell. HAPPY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL.

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