King John

by Stanley Holloway

Stanley Holloway

Seven hundred years odd, next August
Skegness got a bit of a shock
When a great crowd of fellers on horses
Were seen gathered under the clock

At first it were thought t'were an Outing
Till somebody spotted King John
Who were hiding away from the Barons
On account of a row that were on

Now King, he were one for a frolic
So after a gallon of beer
He announced he were going Mixed Bathing
With a lass he'd got off with on pier

They borrowed a tandem from garage
And Mabel said 'Let's be off Jack'
So they started and she took the front half
While King took it easy on back

In less than an hour sea were sighted
Tide weren't as far out as they'd thought
And Mabel soon popped on her costume
While John donned an old crown he'd brought

They splashed and cut all sorts of capers
Not taking much notice of tide
Till the King, who were getting a thirst on
Commenced out of water to stride

When he came to look round for his rainment
T'were a most tragic moment for John
T'was all swep' away, save his trousers
Aye, even his Scout belt was gone

'Now ain't that annoying' cried monarch
'I'm sure I can't walk through the town
And be seen amongst crowds of my subjects
In a pair of grey flannels and crown'

'We must walk down the sands until nightfall
I'm certain t'will be more discreet
Then when it gets dark we'll go inland
And happen get something to eat'

So when they had reached a pub safely
And a nice fire was warming their feet
The king asked 'Hast got any lampreys?
Then bring us two surfeits, toot sweet.'

Now king, he was partial to lampreys
And soon finished his little pile
And were helping the lass with her plateful
A_laughing and chatting the while

He'd forgot for a bit that his armour
Were every bit swep' out to sea
And the bit round his middle, like corsets
Had its use when he'd had a big tea

Now lampreys are 'prone to expansion'
Which means, when they're eaten, they swell
And the king muttered 'Ich Dien', or summat like that
Which meant he weren't feeling too well

The landlord were just saying to swineherd
'Nay lad, that's no fly, that's a hop'
When there came from direction of parlour
The sound of a very loud 'pop'

The landlord took one look round portal
Then shut it with never a word
In fact he said nowt, till he'd drunk half a pint
'To the health of King Henry the Third'

Last updated October 14, 2022