C Richard Miles
Fancy Dress Party - Poem by C Richard Miles
If you’re sensing a smidgeon of wild consternation
From me, it is due to a mad invitation
From one of my mates, who is rather too arty
Regarding the garb for his next birthday party.
The theme for the night, he is keen to express,
Is to roll up in extra-unusual dress.
As to what it should be, think quite off-beat trendsetter
As mad as you like and the odder, the better.
As soon as it landed, I plotted, like treason,
How to get out of it, how to find reason
To miss all the mayhem, but what would I wear
If I couldn’t avoid it and had to go there?
I could have a laugh with a Doctor Who scarf
Or wear silly specs, which are too blue by half.
At a push, I could rush for that tattered top hat
That fat man once sat on and battered quite flat.
If the price of a Donald Duck tie isn’t hyped
And I foster no gripes for a sweater that’s striped
And I’ll sport a sports jacket in pea green to set up,
With non-matching shoes, a quite brash, bizarre get-up.
But then I’m reminded, by others that know,
That that kit just isn’t what one sports to go
To that sort of do. So I’m just sort of guessing
That they really want me to think of cross-dressing.
Though Beckham would do it, a thong would be wrong
And I don’t have the strength for a knee-length sarong
And I really can’t ask for something more daft than
Splashing my cash on a brash Afghan kaftan.
I feel I’d keel over if I slipped on high heels
And I’d cop such a shock from a smock, that it feels
That I really won’t bother to flirt with a skirt
And I’m sure that the fright from sheer tights will just hurt.
I don’t care for hair with its tresses a mess.
And only twits fit in a dress, I confess.
I don’t give a fig for a wig, even short
And as to a bra, that is far from my thought.
Whilst some may just plump for a apron-front tweenie
I’d look such a lump in a frumpy bikini
Though you call me a Tartar, it’s just a non-starter
To make me a martyr to a gold lamé garter.
It’s not Rocky Horror I’ll shock with tomorrow
As fishnets just aren’t an idea I could borrow.
Don’t ask if a basque would suit me quite right
And, though I could force it, a corset’s too tight.
Though others would call it a bit of a hoot to
Mince in with pink plimsolls and a frilly taupe tutu,
I pall at the thought of the call for a jockstrap
To tuck up my tackle to fall for that frock’s trap.
I’ll look far too much of a berk in a burkha
And I’ll pass on the role of a construction worker;
In fact, on that note, you can certainly keep all
The rest of the cast of the vile Village People:
The GI, the cowboy with chaps, it won’t happen;
I won’t be the cop or the jock with the cap on,
With silly moustache and in squeaky black leathers,
Nor even Red Indian with headdress of feathers.
Though others might don one, a more ethnic outfit
Is not fit for me and I certainly doubt it
That my quiet lifestyle, so twee and suburban
Would let me go Sikh for a patka or turban.
Whilst they, in their leis, as Hawaiians, would try on
A classy grass skirt which is murder to iron,
I’d much rather plump for more stuffy apparel:
I’d be huge dressed as Scrooge from the class Christmas Carol.
I’m sure I’m too hairy for Christmas tree fairy
And I don’t even smile at the style of Queen Mary
As punk-rockers may mock if I popped on a toque
And they clocked me in shock as I strode round the block.
I don’t care for bear suits that cost such a packet
I rather just hack it in a smart dinner jacket
And there’s not a glimmer, faint hope or pale chance or
Mild hint that I’d come as a veiled belly-dancer.
Whilst trendies might state that a Space man is “ace man”
And true blues might choose to use even more lace than
Marie Antoinette, for their costume so daring.
It wouldn’t compare to the frown I’d be wearing.
I won’t even make my concession to peace
To pitch up with pearls like a girl in a two-piece,
And I just wish to state that a matronly twinset
Is just something else I would certainly wince at.
I won’t even start on a tweed tartan kilt
For my patience is lagging and starting to wilt
Although, in my wardrobe, I’ve had quite a shufty,
I’m sure I’d feel best if I turned up in mufti.
But, if I did that, it would be utter folly:
They’d say I looked daft, a complete, stupid wally
But I’m certainly sure that I wouldn’t look cute
If I went to the birthday in my birthday suit.
So, though from my friends there’s a risk of estrangement,
I’m sure I can drum up a previous engagement
That someone will make with me, some future date,
That’ll save me from such an inglorious fate.
For fancy-dress parties are really not me:
I simply prefer just a nice cup of tea
And to lounge on the sofa, curl up and relax
In a shirt and a cardie and a loose pair of slacks.
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