The year his father made him go
as The World According to Clarkson
became imprinted in his memory,
like the silent skid of tyre marks on
wet tarmac. Brown Jacket. Blue Jeans.
White Shirt: top buttons left undone,
the hairy chest wig that spilled out,
curled upwards to a pale March sun.
And then the air of blokey bonhomie
he felt compelled to assume
the banter about funny foreigners
at the back of the classroom,
his arguing in Geography
against the need to go green,
and, of course, the punching
of the dinner lady in the canteen.
I made a mighty bonfire
from remaindered copies
of The World According to Jeremy Clarkson
and saw the dance of sparks on
the stupid face emblazoned
upon a thousand covers turn to flame
spreading quickly across his name
and spine, until the pages caught
and raged in flickering fury.
Warming to the task, I threw the
complete back catalogue of Jeffrey Archer
onto the heap and the crowd grew larger
beneath the November night sky,
drawn in by the spectacle as
the paper crackled and smoke curled high.
Out of bags and rucksacks and pockets
came copies of The Da Vinci Code,
Twilight, Naomi Campbell’s Swan,
Paul McKenna’s I Can Make You Rich,
as the bonfire trembled and twitched
and turned fifty shades of orange.
Caught in the passing of a sudden breeze
were heard the shrieks of a hundred
ghostwritten footballers’ autobiographies.
I don’t know how long we stood there,
in silence, admiring our handiwork,
our funeral pyre of inanities,
a bonfire of insanities.
Owing to ambiguities caused by its omission,
the Oxford comma became the subject of a petition
raised by serious serialists desperate to ensure
its use was to be mandated in lists of three or more.
Signatures flooded in from across all of society;
never had they expected to see such variety.
Who would have thought that those in favour
would have had such a diverse, democratic flavour?
There were the investment bankers,
the robbers and thieves,
as well as C-list celebrities,
the needy and mildly-diseased.
There were the footballers,
clowns and less mentally able,
alongside the poets,
unemployed and emotionally unstable.
There was Michael Gove,
a drug fiend and a trafficker of human organs,
and, of course, the sexual deviants,
Jeremy Clarkson and Piers Morgan.
Such was the range of names
that the list did constitute.
Oh, not to forget the Queen,
a well-known madam and a prostitute.
Reader, please beware
of the Clarkson apologist.
Here’s how you can find out
if you’ve got one in your midst.
He’s the kind of man who says
global warming does not exist.
Defends his golf club’s ban on women
then claims he’s not sexist.
He illustrates homosexuality
through the limpness of a wrist.
Still talks about the two world wars
and then clenches his right fist.
Bemoans the bloody immigrants
of which his England now consists.
Every night he drives home
his terrain response Range Rover pissed.
I could go on
but I’m sure you get the gist.
Eeny, Morris Minor, Moe
Catch a Clarkson by his toe
If he hollers, don’t let go,
Eeny, Morris Minor, Moe.
Jeremy always seemed
Like such a nice bloke,
The way he’d drive,
The way he spoke
(About feckless Mexicans
And sloping Asians,
Jeremy had a quip
For all occasions!).
Who would have thought
There could be any basis
On which to label
Him a racist?
Dear Mr Jeremy,
Do you remember me,
The chap you knocked over
Back in October?
Do you recall, Jeremy
How I’d the temerity
To scatter my extremities
When you dismembered me?
I hope I didn’t damage
Your Lotus Elise.
Won’t you ever forgive me,
A double yellow.
A lovable rogue
Of a fellow.
But he’s not.
I’m not one to stand
But I would like to stamp
Jeans, white shirt and jacket
Do not constitute top gear.
So Clarkson please pack it
All in and just disappear.
Jeremy drove fecklessly
And rather recklessly,
Causing skid marks on
The pants of Clarkson.