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For Nicola

I send fond wishes to a horse named Tonto
And you, sweet Nicola, who once was wont to
Cross a busy London thoroughfare
To ride about the Common on this mare.
But there’s another matter that’s still pending,
And that’s her boyish name you keep defending.

A change to something like La Belle Tontina
Would please no less than ‘Lizabeth Regina
When next you’re having tea at Buckingham
Just ask Her as She’s heaping scones with jam.
She’ll answer in her candid, regal way:
“Naming in the Kingdom mustn’t stray

From what we’re all accustomed to from birth.
What’s so in Penzance, no less so in Perth;
And think on T’s poor beastly mental state,
When some curvaceous, flirty stable mate
Gives her mane a playful little shake
And Tonto has no clue of what’s at stake.

She’ll anguish that her name is all too true
Some ghastly psychic funk might then ensue
And fling her onto Freud’s most spacious couch
Making Daddy’s pocket book cry—Ouch!”
So why not heed your Monarch’s kind advice,
Accept this stupid, trifling sacrifice.

Joseph Taylor