The Working Monarch.

A poem by William Schwenck Gilbert

Rising early in the morning,
We proceed to light our fire;
Then our Majesty adorning
In its work-a-day attire,
We embark without delay
On the duties of the day.

First, we polish off some batches
Of political dispatches,
And foreign politicians circumvent;
Then, if business isn't heavy,
We may hold a Royal levee,
Or ratify some acts of Parliament;
Then we probably review the household troops
With the usual "Shalloo humps!" and "Shalloo hoops!"
Or receive with ceremonial and state
An interesting Eastern Potentate,
After that we generally
Go and dress our private valet
(It's rather a nervous duty he's a touchy little man)
Write some letters literary
For our private secretary
He is shaky in his spelling, so we help him if we can.
Then, in view of cravings inner,
We go down and order dinner;
Or we polish the Regalia and the Coronation Plate
Spend an hour in titivating
All our Gentlemen-in-Waiting;
Or we run on little errands for the Ministers of State.
Oh, philosophers may sing
Of the troubles of a King;
Yet the duties are delightful, and the privileges great;
But the privilege and pleasure
That we treasure beyond measure
Is to run on little errands for the Ministers of State!

After luncheon (making merry
On a bun and glass of sherry),
If we've nothing particular to do,
We may make a Proclamation,
Or receive a Deputation
Then we possibly create a Peer or two.
Then we help a fellow creature on his path
With the Garter or the Thistle or the Bath:
Or we dress and toddle off in semi-State
To a festival, a function, or a fete.
Then we go and stand as sentry
At the Palace (private entry),
Marching hither, marching thither, up and down and to and fro,
While the warrior on duty
Goes in search of beer and beauty
(And it generally happens that he hasn't far to go).
He relieves us, if he's able,
Just in time to lay the table,
Then we dine and serve the coffee; and at half-past twelve or one,
With a pleasure that's emphatic,
We retire to our attic
With the gratifying feeling that our duty has been done.
Oh, philosophers may sing
Of the troubles of a King,
But of pleasures there are many and of troubles there are none;
And the culminating pleasure
That we treasure beyond measure
Is the gratifying feeling that our duty has been done!

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