Tuesday, 23 March 2010
Everything Marvellous! Miss Catherine Johnson
In the spirit of Nicky Browne who has taken us back to AD 50 and Roman werewolves, I would like to share my own world, a thousand or so years closer to our own, which starts here with this poem,
originally printed in the Bath Herald June 1817,
OH! Aid me, ye spirits of wonder! who soar
In realms of Romance where none ventur'd before;
Ye Fairies! who govern the fancies of men,
And sit on the point of Monk Lewis's pen;
Ye mysterious Elves! who forever remain
With Lusus naturaes and Ghosts of Cock Lane;
Who ride upon broomsticks, intent to deceive
All those who appear pre-disposed to believe,
And softly repeat from your home in the spheres
Incredible stories to credulous ears;
With everything marevllous, everything new,
We'll trace a description of Miss CARABOO.
Princess Caraboo, that's her actual portrait up there, was a real young woman from Regency history. I have taken her as a starting point (truth, as usual, is stranger than anything I could invent and in real life she ended her days as a successful Bristol business woman who sold medicinal leeches) and she has led me into a world of posture clubs, honour lost, honour restored, and thigh slapping, thoroughly nasty cads.
Every time I wander off course from my story I come back to this poem. I have so nearly squeaked to the finish I could sing.
And because she was real and I have taken liberties with the truth, (I am sure Caraboo herself would approve of that) I have told my story from the point of view of a completely and utterly worthless young man; Mr Frederick Worrall, 18, just out of Westminster school, woman hater and horrible snob.
I have almost got a title - The TRUE and MARVELLOUS story of the UNMASKING of the PRINCESS CARABOO.
I am at the final chapter. OK I'm a month late but let's forget that shall we? Let's also forget that as yet my lovely story has no publisher (another story) and lets hope someone is interested in empire line frocks, deception, demi reps and beau nasties.
All together; "HURRAH!"