ReadingRoom

The Sunday Poem: Toad Muller

A poem by Dunedin writer Victor Billot to mark the elevation of Todd Muller as new leader of the National Party.

The Rise of Toad

All hail! Glad tidings O countrymen and womyn!

The battle for the soul of our green and pleasant land
is joined again: the banners blue unfurled and proud,
stamped by the novel emblem of a Toad!
Now just wait a minute, interrupts Simon the Unfortunate,
before Lord Toad steps up nimble and lops his head.
Toad Mullet! Lord of the Bay!
Out of such bloody genesis he roughly clambers.
From the extensive highway projects of Tauranga
to the farting mud of Rotorua and beyond,
how doth his hairless dome gleam in anticipation
of the Crown. A Godly Man, yet of this world,
defender of the embryo, expert in kiwifruit logistics,
a featureless, plain son of the Dark Age of Roger and Ruth,
a suit that walks itself into the Koru Lounge,
facial muscles reassembling in a grin for the camera.
He has come to join battle:
first he slayed Simon of his own House,
now he comes to ride against Queen Cindy the Kind.
Sound the bugles! Crash the drums!
The peasants watch in silent wonder
as he rides past at the head of his army of Orcs,
then return to planting their dusty fields.
At the rear of his ragged column,
follows slow another bald retainer
wearing a half smile: Baron Luxon
on his gilded steed, his loyalty pledged
for the time being, at least.

Victor Billot was previously moved to commemorate the fall of Garrick Tremain.

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