Abdicate. Yes, that’s my word of the day.
~ Peter Serafinowicz
Ah, a boy can but dream.
Like he does each time standing on the sand’s edge Dungeness hands in the air whispering into the wind — summoning whales.
Ooooooooooo oooooooooo oooooo !
Hoping a message to him they’d bring. That in the breeze will come a voice saying enough, that she were proclaiming her disavowal.
Then one day sure enough Boreas she blows — a missive:
« leave I will, come day one of the month fourth ».
Not quite spoken, sufficiently declarative though. Enough to make his palms flutter.
Creeping across his lips a smile.
His eyes in them a twinkle arises. Somewhat appropriate given the day.
The day, that day, this day — a flash of suspicion across his eyebrows crawls:
be this a joke played by some knave?
A sudden case of the fantod.
The wind though she disappears his fears. One can almost hear his ears twitching joyfully away — the corgis have nothing on him.
Across some eleven thousand kilometres a couple of oceans albeit nary a whale.
Nor a wail.
« Chap! » in F# — not via an owl hooting in the twilight close enough though — singing in the hand of Russell Bennetts, « could you do a farewell piece for Queen Mob’s Teahouse? a meditation on goodbyes? That sort of thing? »
Ooo! A request.
Quite possibly a summons.
She keeps her Moet et Chandon
In her pretty cabinet
“Let them eat cake,” she says
Just like Marie Antoinette
A built-in remedy
For Khrushchev and Kennedy
At any time an invitation
You can’t decline
How could one ever say « no » to those blue blue eyes.
PUT TEA INTO TEAPOT. ADD HOT WATER
God save the Queen
We mean it, man
We love our Queen
~ Sex Pistols
We hate our national anthem.
Cos it’s God Save The Queen.
The Queen lives in a big house with
barbed wire and people with guns.
That’s one saved fucking Queen.
She’s overly saved, she has no idea
of the struggle of human existence.
We have to work, raise a family.
We don’t have nannies.
It’s what you gotta do in your life.
God Save The Queen, no.
God Attack The Queen,
that’s what it should be.
God attack the Queen, send
big dogs after her, that bite her bum
Let them chase after her
and rip her knickers off … ?
That’d be fantastic.
She’d have to fight the dog
with a handbag
with a brick inside. “Crazy dog!”
“Rrrargh! Kill the Queen.”
“No, crazy dog!
Maybe she’d kill the crazy dog
and everyone in Britain would go,
“Fair play to the Queen.”
The Queen would have self-respect
for the first time in her life.
Yes. It would work.
It would be fantabulous.
~ Eddie Izzard
Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen,
Tod und Verzweiflung,
Tod und Verzweiflung flammet um mich her!
~ Emanuel Schikaneder 
Oh, to be a killer queen.
Mikael Korhonen, Closed Café, 2018 
COVER TEAPOT. STEEP TEA
how do I mourn thee?
that would remind me too much of a you — one in relation with all others, every other.
a personal one, one who is one as one — singular.
But now that you are about to be gone, almost already gone too gone in our minds, leaving us with a last glimpse of you — I won’t even get to be tall to see Christmas trees as small — the one I am attempting to mourn is always already in my memory, remembered. Which brings with it the question: which fragment of you will I resurrect, have I resurrected, will I eventually be resurrecting (come say the first of May); which brings with it its compendium, its partner, a partnering question: is it any longer even possible to speak of thee as such?
Or perhaps even: it is this fragmented, fragmentary, nature of the remembrance that ensures every memory is singular.
And everywhere the broken-hearted
On every lonely avenue
No-one could reach them
No-one but you
Not that I am necessarily able to tell the difference between them. For, each recollection of thee, of you, is haunted by the possibility of forgetting. And since there is no object to forgetting, no referentiality when one forgets — all I can possibly articulate is the fact that I might have forgotten — there is no possibility of knowing what is being forgotten. Thus, there is no possibility of knowing if each time one remembers, that each moment of memory, might bring with it forgetting. In other words, forgetting is not antonymous to memory; they are always already a part of each other, even as they may quite possibly remain apart.
So, not only can I not know if my resurrection of thee is accurate, it might not even have anything to do with thee. It might well be a you — one not just in relation with all others, every other, but a you that is completely other.
Perhaps then, all that I can mourn is the possibility of thee.
How oh how then
is a boy going to spill the T
Perhaps, all that allows me to mourn in the first place is the possibility that I have forgotten, am always forgetting, thee.
Perhaps then, all I can mourn is you.
STRAIN TEA SOLIDS & POUR INTO TEA CUP
Freud reminded us that when we lose someone, we do not
always know what it is in that person that has been lost.
So when one loses, one is also faced with something
enigmatic: something is hiding in the loss, something is
lost within the recesses of loss. If mourning involves
knowing what one has lost (and melancholia originally
meant, to a certain extent, not knowing), then mourning
would be maintained by its enigmatic dimension, by the
experience of not knowing incited by losing what we
cannot fully fathom
~ Judith Butler
And, as Mark Fisher continues to remind us, « the work of grief is not only about mourning the lost object, it is also about struggling against the object’s implacable refusal to let go ».
Give me one more second to dry my eyes
Give me one more day to realize
Smoke’s in our eyes or in the distance
Either way, we’re gonna miss it
~ Matt Berninger
And whether we actually know what the object is might be an entirely different question.
Where the object in question might well be from the future.
And where mourning is always also a kind of waiting — in other words, an openness to a possibility that cannot yet, may never quite ever, be known.
Since we are born into life
we are also born into death.
~ Alain Badiou
To wait —
perchance to dream
But not quite a knowing-dream, a dream of a known: that would mean one is already certain of what-is-to-come, and are either in anticipation or disappointment. For, awaiting is a state in which one chooses to remain open to something that is-to-come, to a possible arrival, but where what exactly this thing is remains veiled from one, hidden from one.
The Queen is dead.
Long live the Queen.
For things, they keep their secrets.
Which does not mean that the thing is entirely unknown either: otherwise, one could not be in wait, and anything that occurred to one would be mere happenstance. Thus, waiting entails a thing both known and unknown at exactly the same time; in which one knows that one is awaiting its possibility without quite knowing what this possibility is.
In other words,
Oh Queenie, my queen … how do your tea take thee?
CLOSE EYES. ENJOY
Friday night and the lights are low
Looking out for a place to go
Where they play the right music
Getting in the swing
You come to look for a king
Anybody could be that guy
But there, to me, be — and always will only be — thee,
sitting there, drinking tea.
Your majester, I is your humbug servant.
Oh, Majester! Oh Queen! Oh Monacher! Oh, Golden Sovereign!
Oh, Ruler! Oh, Ruler of Straight Lines! Oh Sultana!
I is come here … to give you a … a sistance …
~ The BFG
And, Queen B
— whomever she may be —
quite a ring to it has she.
Hell’s Vengeance Boils in My Heart,
death and despair,
Death and despair blaze around me!
~ aria, second act from Die Zauberflöte
by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
This photograph is used under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial Generic 2.0 license. A link to Mikael Korhonen’s work can be found here: flickr.com/photos/wellmeri/43569547480
Jeremy Fernando reads, writes, and makes. He is a long-time contributor to Queen Mob’s Teahouse and will her muchly miss. Top image is duncan c: Mad Hatter, San Diego graffiti, 2018 (Flickr). Bottom image is a detail from Cold, Indrid: Underground City, 2015 (Flickr).