The colonies had little occasion to feel or to resent direct royal prerogative.
Those who say we should dismantle the role of Poet Laureate altogether, the trick they miss is that being called this thing, with the weight of tradition behind it, and with the association of the Royal family, does allow you to have conversations and to open doors, and wallets, for the good of poetry in a way that nothing else would allow.
What royal families are very good at doing is surviving and reinventing themselves. That’s true whether it’s a constitutional monarchy in Britain or an authoritarian monarchy.
I praise the Lord, the Sovereign of the royal realm, Who has extended his sway over the tract of the world.
Indian classical music was born when time barely existed. It developed further within the structures of royal courts and a system of patronage where the ruler or the feudal master determined all.
If I felt, in the event of a royal wedding, inspired to write about people coming together in marriage or civil partnership, I would just be grateful to have an idea for the poem. And if I didn’t, I’d ignore it.
Out in the lonely woods the jasmine burns Its fragrant lamps, and turns Into a royal court with green festoons The banks of dark lagoons.
On a royal birthday every house must fly a flag, or the owner would be dragged to a police station and be fined twenty-five rubles.
It is a happy thing that there is no royal road to poetry. The world should know by this time that one cannot reach Parnassus except by flying thither.
‘Britain’s Royal Families’ became my first published book, in 1989, from The Bodley Head, and the rest of the story is – dare I say it? – history!