The Royals and I : a statement from Andrew Green

It’s time for me to to break my long silence on a sensitive topic. Loyal followers will be acutely aware that I was overlooked this summer in my quest to be the United Kingdom’s next Poet Laureate. I had hoped that my close association with Her Majesty the Queen, living, as I then did just across the river from her, would have swung the decision in my favour but sadly it was not to be. It seems that, despite the commitment I demonstrated to producing verse for royal occasions my little ditties were not quite what Her Majesty or the lackies surrounding her were seeking.

I thought the country could do with cheering up a bit but they obviously didn’t agree. Now that we have a comedian for our Prime Minister, and a majority of the country seem sufficiently entertained to want him returned to office, I assume we bards have to strike a more serious note.

I can not pretend that the slight was unexpected but frankly the rejection was harder to take than I’d expected. It’s rather like applying for a job you weren’t sure you wanted. You try to tell yourself you don’t care when they don’t want you but there’s something about the act of applying that convinces you you wanted the job even if any first you weren’t sure.

I thought my collected royal poems in the aptly titled, Begging Your Pardon : Please Can I Be Laureate? might have swung things but sadly they didn’t seem to. The volume is still available on Amazon for anyone who may have missed it but frankly it’s time for me to move on and focus on other things. Hopefully there literary juices will start to flow again and I’lll be back to myself in 2020 but my association with the royal family is I’m sad to say at an end.

It’s with some regret that I dissociate myself from royal associations but, given my namesake Prince Andrew’s single handed attempt to ensure our name “Andrew’ will not make the top ten boy’s names for 2020, it’s probably the right time.

I think I will be better off foregoing royal patronage and striking out on my own. To reinforce the separation we have sold our house across the river from Her Majesty and moved to a new property down river in Maidenhead where I shall be licking my wounds in the parliamentary constituency of our former Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon Theresa May, who knows a little about rejection herself. I’m not quite certain what comes next but watch this space for news of new beginnings.

A Job Offer from Buckingham Palace!

I’ve finally had a job offer from Buckingham Palace! I’m a little surprised and confused because it’s not quite the job I’d hoped for. You’ll know I hope that I have offered myself as the next Poet Laureate. Sadly there has been no news on that front but another opportunity has come up.

I’ve received correspondence, via an agency I forgot I’d ever registered with, offering me a job in ticket sales. Slightly left field but maybe Her Majesty is dropping a hint I need to get a foot in the door and work my way up? I’d have preferred ‘fast track’ given my advanced years but you have to start somewhere. I’ll share the details here in case any one else is interested.

Dear Andrew

We are sending you this mailing because you are registered on the UK’s leading website for over 50s jobseekers.
The Royal Collection Trust has posted a new job opportunity which may be of interest to you.The employers are particularly interested in receiving applications from people aged over 50. The details are shown below.
Please accept our apologies if your experience or interest lies elsewhere. We’ll be sending new opportunities in the next few weeks.

Thank you.
It’s being part of the team who deliver an exceptional visitor experience.
It’s the collaboration and the community spirit. And it’s helping millions enjoy magnificent buildings and beautiful art. 
This is what makes working for Royal Collection Trust so different.
When the doors of Buckingham Palace’s glorious State Rooms are opened to the public each August and September, hundreds of thousands of people come to visit. As part of an outstanding and friendly team, you’ll make their experience special.
Whether you’re selling the ticket that starts it all, making things perfect on the day, or providing the outstanding retail service at the end, you’ll make every visitor feel welcome and valued.
You’ll answer their questions, provide information, and always aim for the highest possible levels of visitor care and security.
About you
Friendly, outgoing and professional, with the ability to communicate well with all kinds of people, you’ll fit right in.
You’re an outstanding team player, cool and calm under pressure, and able to work flexibly and effectively even when things get busy.
For our Retail and Ticket Sales roles, an ability to engage with customers to meet sales targets is important too, as well as numeracy and a good level of computer literacy.
Above all, you know what it takes to create the kind of customer experience that leaves a lasting and positive impression.

This is your opportunity to use your personality and customer service skills to deliver the exceptional.
Royal Collection Trust is committed to equality of opportunity.
The closing date for applications is 23 January 2019.
Pay: £10.55 per hour, plus lunch and training provided

Hours: A minimum of 300 hours for the duration of the contract. You will typically be rostered to work over 4 or 5 days per week, Monday to Sunday, including regular weekends.

Contract: Fixed-term
To see more about this role and Apply please click Here. 

 

 

 

 

A guest blog from Her Majesty the Queen

It seems that the would be Laureate Mr. Andrew Green was put out that One did not include a ‘shout out’, as he chooses to put it, for his book Begging Your Pardon – Please Can I Be Laureate? in one’s Christmas Message. One has apologised of course but a few words here seemed the least one could do to make up.

2018 has been a year of centenaries. The Royal Air Force celebrated its hundredth anniversary with a memorable fly-past demonstrating a thrilling unity of purpose and execution. We owe them and all our armed services our deepest gratitude and 100 years on from the ending of World War 1 we should not forget the poets who brought the horrors of war to life for us. Who can forget Wilfred Owen who died so tragically days before the armistice? We recall that his mother received the telegram informing her of his death on Armistice Day as the church bells in Shrewsbury were ringing out in celebration of the wars end. One likes poetry and will be putting in a word for Mr. Green to be the next Poet Laureate. It would be handy for one with him living so close to Windsor. One’s there most week-ends and never knows when a quick couplet might be called for.

It has been a busy year for my family. With two weddings and two babies and another child expected soon. I loved Mr. Green’s poem for Harry and Meghan’s wedding though it was a little disrespectful here and there and I have warned him to pull his socks off. We don’t do the ‘off with his head’ bit any more but we still have standards. Harry enjoyed it but we know about his sense of humour and the trouble it gets him into. Meghan wasn’t awfully sure; a bit to British for her one expects.

It all helps to keep a grandmother well occupied. We have had other celebrations too, including the 70th birthday of the Prince of Wales. I forgot to buy him a card and have heard about nothing else all year. Charles thinks one is becoming forgetful and should think of retiring.

Some cultures believe a long life brings wisdom. I’d like to think so. Perhaps, part of that wisdom is to recognize some of life’s baffling paradoxes such as why everything one enjoys eating or drinking is so bad for one. One has eaten so much this Christmas and would like to go on a diet in the New Year but all the beastly banquets make that so difficult for one.

In April the Commonwealth Heads of Government met in London. My father welcomed just eight countries to the first such meetings in 1948. Now, the Commonwealth includes 53 countries with 2.4 billion people, a third of the world’s population. Its strength lies in the bonds of affection it promotes and a common desire to live in a better, more peaceful world. It’s important to build friendships around the world especially when we are struggling to get on with the neighbours.

One’s nervous of mentioning the Brexit thing, every one gets so cross with each other’s and one’s running out of relatives one can marry off to take people’s mind off it.

Even with the most deeply held differences, treating the other person with respect and as a fellow human being is always a good first step towards greater understanding. Indeed the Commonwealth Games held this year on Australia’s Gold Coast are known universally as the friendly games because of their emphasis on good will, mutual respect and not inviting the Americans, Chinese or European’s. We send four British teams instead of one and win stacks more medals than we would otherwise. We love it.

The Christmas story retains its appeal since it doesn’t provide theoretical explanations for the puzzles of life. Instead, it’s about the birth of a child, and the hope that birth 2,000 years ago, brought to the world. Only a few people acknowledged Jesus when he was born; now billions follow him. I believe his message of peace on earth and goodwill to all and unexpected success is never out of date. It can be heeded by everyone; not least obscure poets!!

A very happy Christmasto you all and may Mr. Green and his poetry thrive in the New Year!

Oh and buy the book or, if one’s to poor, get the kindle version.

How wise were the Kings?

Why did the Kings bring stupid gifts

Like gold and myrrh and frankincense?

I guess us men just hate to shop.

Thy couldn’t use the internet

Or google it for baby things.

They should have left it to their wives.

Who’d leave shopping down to Kings?

Although it’s said that they were wise

What man’s wiser than his wife?

Dont overspend this Christmas

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Don’t overspend this Christmas.

Don’t get yourself in debt.

Don’t overspend this Christmas.

There really is no point.

You  escalate your spending

And others spend more too.

They’re spending money

they haven’t got

and getting in debt for you.

Be nice to your friends and neighbours

Spread good cheer with a smile

But don’t go overspending

It’s really not the point.

Simple gifts from shepherds

Symbolic ones from Kings.

It’s not how much the present costs

It’s all the little things.

It’s spending time together

The kindness and the fun

Don’t overspend this Christmas

But have fun everyone.

Stranger in red

Was I the only kid that ever got scared

That in dead of night a man in red, 

With hidden face and long white beard

Would come and crawl around my bed?

I shut my eyes and kept them tight

I partly did so out of fright.

I had been warned I shouldn’t wake

But found it hard to sleep that night.

Bring me presents but Santa please

Drop them quietly then just leave.

Don’t come creeping round my bed

I hardly know you when all’s said.

Christmas Ghost

I am the Christmas Ghost

I haunt the end of year

I am a chill in the air

A creak on the stair

A feeling ‘something’s there’.

 

I’m a frisson of fright

I’m a shiver of fear

Or a face seen in the fire.

I dim your Christmas candles

I’m the spectre at your feast.

But when nights are dark

It’s cold outside

And you’re huddled round the fire

Someone will invite me in

With a call for a ghostly tale.

 

So why do you summon the Christmas Ghost

To blunt your Christmas cheer?

It’s hard for a spirit to know men’s minds

But I guess it’s something like this:

I’m a hint there’s more than you can know

I’m hint of a life beyond

I’m a hint of things as they were before

I’m a hint of bygone times.

I join you up with those long gone

The ones you’ve loved and lost

But most of all I’m a good excuse

For a huddle round the fire.