My nephews put on a show for me.

My nephews put on a show for me

Uncle come and watch us put a show on!
Uncle come and watch us do our thing!
Uncle come and watch us put a show on!
Uncle come and watch us dance and sing!

They made the garage into a small theatre
They’d fashioned a temporary stage
They’d spent the afternoon rehearsing lines
And they were almost ready to work off the page

And with a final countdown and some music
They danced on stage as I sat there with a fixed grin
And for the next hour they put a show on
How was it? Now, where do I begin . . .

Oh my god I was crap, it was really really crap
I sat there in stunned silence and I didn’t even clap
The choreography was halfway up a tree
And I wanted to shout out, why don’t you shut your trap?

Their jokes were mostly stale
And they missed each one of their queues
Neither could hold a note
And if they ask me for my views

I’ll yell them it needed work or else
Perhaps they should start afresh
Their high and squeaky voices made
A mockery of the scene from MacBeth

Their comedy skits were just a bad cliche
I’d seen if all before
I said I wasn’t born yesterday,
The youngest one is four.

And when they tried a Kabuki scene
Which ordinarily would be one of my picks
They had a complete lack of subtlety,
I felt I was going to be sick.

They next tried Beethoven’s Fifth
Though it was a hideous botch
The eight year old can’t play a violin for shit
I kept looking at my watch

Then they tried to ramp things up
With a couple of Beckettian minutes
They’d grasped the existentialist undertones
But I could tell their hearts weren’t in it.

And then they reached for their trumpets
And that’s when my stomach started to churn
I shouldn’t get talked into these things,
Oh when will I ever learn?

They cannot act to save their lives
And this whole show was proof
And much to my dismay they announced a scene
From Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

And then the youngest tried observational stand up,
‘What’s the big deal with baths?
They keep you away from water then plonk you in it’.
Admittedly, that did get some laughs.

And then thank goodness the end drew near
Just as I was starting to slumber
They dragged on a huge cardboard number 8
And said, hey, that’s our big closing number.

Now some people they might justly say
I am an ungrateful sod
But watching these two prance about
Is proof that there is no god.

For no entity would ever allow
Such a cursed and hideous crime
And even worse than their meagre talents,
They made me spill my wine.

Author: Robert Garnham

Performance and spoken word artist.

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