What the Lord Chamberlain Allowed

Fifties prudery! Backstage at the Pivvy, Lodge Lane,
where Uncle Bill performed as red-nosed comic between

nude tableaus of scrawny Liverpool wenches
decked out in classical garb: William Tell's son

with papier maché apple elasticked to her head;
Papa Tell: a naked lass with an aimed crossbow,

neither allowed to move, not even a tick, just
like guards at attention at Buck House, on a cold stage.

I was seven watching from the wings the powdered birds
-- but I preferred then currant buns to nipples like currants.

Later, sneaked peeks at pics of judies from underdeveloped
nations around the globe helped me to develop.

By Christopher T. George