The Board of Former Vicars

Eardwulf of Banbury is no more
Simon de Longueville died at three score

Robert de St Cast wasn’t much stronger
Gilbert of Lincoln didn’t last longer.

Reverend Seth
contracted Black Death.

Daniel Pricketts
passed away of rickets.

Solomon Hogg
drowned in a peat bog.

Jeremiah Rich
fell drunk in a ditch.

Rehoboam Yossarian
Murdered by a Parliamentarian.

Bartholomew Hague
dead of the ague.

Nathaniel Loach
fell off a stage coach.

Old Father Ned
A gargoyle fell on his head.

Arbuthnot Sage
died of old age.

Mark of Brackley is under the nave altar
And so are John James, and Benjamin Walter.

Roderick Cholmondely, from our squires’ line bred
proved that blue blood is as mortal as red.

And old Fr Ed, and long ago Athelred
They’re all of them dead.

Dead dead dead dead.

Fr Vyvyan’s still alive
But doesn’t really thrive.


(from Melissa Sparrow’s Forthcoming Collection, A Hint of Death in the Morning)


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