A Nursery Rhyme Updated: “To Banbury Cross”

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“To Banbury Cross”, by Philip S Davies.

The Disclaimer: With the kind permission of Lord Saye and Sele, I am happy to confirm that this poem is entirely fictitious, and bears no relation whatsoever to any member of the Fiennes family of Broughton, past or present!


I enter the Horsefair to park my cock horse,

And long to discover a legend’s true source.

An elegant spire stands in midst of the road,

The Banbury Cross famed in nursery’s ode.


No tinkling of bells, no clip-clop of hooves,

The roar of an engine comes over the roofs.

Long gone are the horse-riding days in West Bar,

Our fine lady’s safer arriving by car.


Alas, for the quaintness of nursery rhymes,

Lord Saye and Sele’s daughter has moved with the times.

No flowers in her hair and no bells on her toes,

And never mind fingers – that ring’s through her nose!


My eyes don’t deceive me: ‘tis not a white horse,

She’s driving her yellow Ferrari, of course.

With radio blasting, her roof she won’t close,

So we shall have music wherever she goes.