Thinking of the death of King George V (and who isn’t at this time of year?), it was, of course commemorated in verse by John Betjeman, like so –
DEATH OF KING GEORGE V
“New King arrives in his capital by air” – Daily Newspaper
Spirit of well-shot woodcock, partridge, snipe
Flutter and bear him up the Norfolk sky:
In that red house in a red mahogany book-case
The stamp collection waits with mounts long dry.
The big blue eyes are shut which saw wrong clothing
And favourite fields and coverts from a horse;
Old men in country houses hear clocks ticking
Over thick carpets with a deadened force;
Old men who never cheated, never doubted,
Communicated monthly, sit and stare
At the new suburb stretched beyond the runway
Where a young man lands hatless from the air.
I always used to think that “communicated monthly” meant that the old men in country houses only spoke once a month, or perhaps wrote letters to each other monthly. In fact, I believe, it means that they took communion once a month as opposed to taking it more frequently, which they would have seen as a Romish practice.
Now that the Christmas turkey has all gone, “well-shot woodcock, partridge, snipe” do sound very tempting …
and its natural enemy, in his youth (dreaming of game) …