Each week he would give me laundry, For he had no machine of his own, and I, An amiable soul, willing to help and filled With the goodness of one who wants only to Spread joy to humanity, Offered to do a load for him. ‘Someone else did offer’, he said, ‘But I’m too embarrassed to give them anything other Than the good stuff. Any chance you can do my pants?’
So each Friday he’d lumber me with a big bag of Grundies, A bulging canvas sack Filled to the brim with multi colored briefs, scats, Boxers of every hue, a solid 10kg of smalls which I’d have to lug home On the bus Wondering how someone can go through so many In one week And deciding it was best not to ask.
And for months, yes, I would take part In this underpant migration, that Bulky canvas bag bulging with pant delight As I stood on the lip of the bus doorstep, The whole vehicle slightly tilting with the excess weight, Wondering if the driver would charge me for two seats, And then, scurrying up the narrow steps to the upper deck Often wedged halfway to emerge gasping, A cork from a bottle, stuffing the pants beside me Between the seats that no-one may gaze upon This curiously crusty cornucopia And figure me to be Some kind of fetishist.
But one day, oh, Disaster struck.
Lady fortune deserted me at just the wrong moment. Halfway down the bus steps in preparation of a Pant-assisted disembarkation, A jab on the brakes of the bus and I almost fell, Toppled down the steps yet saved at the last moment Only to see that bulky bulging bag bounce, Fall from my hands, and spill its contents Far and wide throughout the lower deck.
Like a fountain, an explosion, A brief firework display Of briefs, The lower deck passengers, Like astronauts welcomed home by a ticker tape parade, A knicker tape parade, Sat and flinched as pants rained down in all their Gussetty glory, Some put in mind of the Blitz, others Of a particularly uncoordinated acrobatic display. John from the chip shop had Y-fronts on his head. Jan had a pair land in her lap. The lad at the back went right off his KFC When his six piece variety box was breached By boxer briefs While these suddenly animated underpants Simply slithered down the bus steps, A musty Niagara, a thousand stinky slinkies, While I held on with all my might, Now surfing this Predominantly Primark-produced wave of polyester pants, While some kind of dark conjuring or undie witchcraft Caused one of them to stick to the front windscreen, As the driver, suddenly obscured When a pair of XXL novelty Spider-Man scats Wedged over his eyes, nose and ears Like a multi coloured Mexican wrestling mask, Slammed on the brakes.
Hardly anyone screamed. That old wartime community spirit As disposable gloves were handed around, And a rake borrowed from a nearby hardware store And the canvas bag refilled, That I should escape that bus with my dignity As tattered and shredded As the vast majority of those intimate undergarments.
Monday morning I handed the bag back. Cheers, he said, I owe you one.
I'd do anything for my mother. She brought me into this world And she was there during those teenage years When I was all Hormones and acne And now I try to pay her back Anyway I can Often and without fail Except when she asks me to go to the shops And get her a Daily Mail.
I mean, What if someone sees me?
I’m not religious But I believe that one day, God Was violently sick And that the vomit spewed forth In a never ending cascade, A torrent of absolutely disgusting Relentless upchuck And when she finished she Wiped her chin and said, There, I’ve gone and created The Daily Mail.
Oh thou art a putrid and filthy concoction In those pestilential pages A generation booms its last and softly dies Amid sofa advertisements, Nodding in agreement with letters to the editor, Opinion dressed up as fact. Your headlines are misleading, Your logic is twisted, You stand for an England Which never existed. You’re a comic with no humour Your editorials are absurd Peddling anecdote and rumour And about as patriotic as a turd.
There’s a middle England somewhere, A place of patios and pathos, Middle class porcelain and so achingly white Yet you wouldn’t know it because Everyone’s so bloody crimson with rage Because of what they read on the page Of the Daily Mail. The lace curtains twitch When there’s someone in the cul de sac Because nothing sells better Than righteous indignation And a subtle reassurance that The reader’s prejudices are normal. Anger has become performative And inevitably, heteronormative.
Oh, Daily Mail, Oh you rancid hate-mongers, Oh,You peddlers of puke, Oh, You snivelling badger-breathed scumbags, Oh, You’re a parasite on the face of intellectual debate, A fart in the public toilet of common decency, A ranting screaming spitting shower of bastards Who make Mussolini look like the Chuckle Brothers. I’d rather snog an electric eel Than be seen Carrying your stench-emitting Saliva spitting Gibberish-dribbling Mould-seeping Sorry-assed excuse for casual racism And institutionalised transphobia.
Oh dear! They haven't got any, Is what I say to the Muv When I come back from the shops Empty handed. Well, she says, It is popular.