I wrote this poem a couple of years ago. At the time, I was really interested in Victorian culture and particularly how horrible life was for women during this era. It is heavily inspired by singer/violinist Emilie Autumn, who is the Queen of all things Victorian. I can’t possibly hide my adoration for her and this poem was written while I listened to her music. My goal here was to blend a dark history with sarcasm and humour. I think humour makes heavy topics tolerable and even entertaining. Tea parties weren’t really all that innocent after all.
Chatter echoed throughout the garden
As afternoon tea prompted women
To spill their innermost thoughts and dreams,
Which husbands could never hear, it seemed.
Clothed in tightly laced corsets that pinched,
Since a woman’s waist looked best when cinched,
These women knew they must look decent
And that breathing was unimportant.
Along with the tea were served muffins
And cherry scones placed in fancy tins,
Which were clearly only there for show
‘For no lady wants a healthy glow.
To protect the women from the sun
Were quaint parasols for everyone.
Because Victorian ladies know
A tan is a definite no-no.
Placed throughout the garden were wickets
For the dames to play croquet in sets,
Since it was unlikely to tire
Whilst knocking balls through small, arched wires.
Little girls pretended to drink tea
Nearby their mothers, smiling with glee.
Little did the ignorant girls know,
Poison-spiked tea is hard to swallow.
The pleasant aroma of roses
Wafted into many pale noses,
Much unlike the stench of master’s breath
When his rapes his lady ‘til her death.
Two of the women sat together
And had been best friends for forever.
If their hidden romance was revealed,
Then love from doctor could make them healed.
The hostess refilled dainty teacups
As one dame tried to stop her hiccups.
And once the party had reached its end
The ladies feared their frail hearts would rend.
Alas, the women said their goodbyes
And a few even began to cry.
Because they all knew their fun was over
Until they fucked their secret lovers.
Emilie’s “Marry Me” was clearly an inspiration for “Teatime”. 😉