Poetic Off-Licence

JANE AUSTEN'S ALLEGRO goes all Shakespearean

To commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of Bill Shakespeare, and by way of tribute, we have put together the following piece, imagining The Bard of Avon was writing for Monkey Business.

Act 1  Scene 1

I knew for certain it was now the winter of our discontent as I walked past the Vic on the 10th day of February 2016, some five weeks after Twelfth night, when I heard a voice cry out  from the sponsors’ lounge balcony “Ronnie Moore, Ronnie Moore, wherefore art thou Ronnie Moore?”
Parting is such sweet sorrow”, Moore muttered under his breath as he left (stage right) by mutual consent.

I must admit to feeling sorry for Ronnie, as on the back of the previous season’s performances and players that he signed close season, the playoffs were, verily, the least that I expected under his managerial reign. As the Bard once said “Oft expection fails, and most oft there”, which sums up my feeling of Pools this season. Equally it could be argued that for the fans, and for fans of most clubs, it is the case that the course of true love never did run smooth.


Unlike his predecessor Ken Hodcroft - a man more sinned against than sinning, Chairman Gary Coxall acted speedily to install (enter stage left) Craig Hignett, the former Crewe, Barnsley and Blackburn player, as Pools' new manager. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown.

Meanwhile away from the Vic our youthful chairman revealed that lines of communication have reopened with Team Valley Borough Council regarding the purchase of the ground from its landlords when he let it slip that the first thing we do is kill the lawyers. Which is a more positive strategy than Mr Hovercraft's who would not even talk to the bright lights at the Corporation with his “Nothing will come of nothing” policy.


In a recent Yorkshire television interview, despite his dismissal, Ronnie Moore was very complimentary about Hartlepool United and in particular about Gary Coxall and his plans for the club and said that under his guidance Pools are going places. Ronnie went further by saying he feels that Pools will be promotion contenders 2016/17 season. Mind, he did stop short of saying that he would be putting a bet on them. If Ronnie’s prediction comes to fruition, all Poolies as one will cry “God for Gary, England and St.George.”


After a sluggish start in the managerial chair Craig Hignett got to grips with his squad and the ball literally started rolling with a 3-1 away win at Barnet. This was followed up with the same result at home against our fellow relegation strugglers from the East End of London. Higgy, still somewhat unfamiliar with the League Two scene, was actually unsure who we were playing on that day, when he was heard to say "Is this the Daggers I see before me?

A few weeks later, what at one stage everyone thought would be a six pointer and season defining match, against the House of York, turned out to be a routine three points for Pools, who by that time were a dozen points clear of the Minstermen.

Many Pools fans lamented City's drop into the National League. Alas poor York, we knew them well, as many a happy day was spent in their fair town by the Poolie hordes over the years, doing much the same to the locals and property that the Vikings did. A grand day out (oops, that's Wallace and Gromit, not Shakespeare).

In Pools’ penultimate away game they were given huge praise by the Oxford Manager, fans and press alike as being the best away team to visit the Kassam stadium this season. Higgy dismissed the platitudes and glumly put the result in black and white with the words. “Two-nil or not Two-nil, that is the question.

A brief summary of what is now almost last season:
First month, four wins on the trot, being As You Like it. Then as the season progressed it became A Comedy of Errors. For the last four or five weeks of the season we were more or less safe from relegation so it was a case of Much Ado About Nothing.
So we will look back fondly and say All's Well that Ends Well.


Here are a few other Shaky Shakespeare quotations that could be attributed to Pools in one form or another. Allegedly, maybe or perhaps...

This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this Victoria Park.”
- Dave Brown, Pools groundsman

Unhappy that I am, I cannot heave.”  - Heard on the supporters’ bus coming back home after the one-nil away defeat to Carlisle
"Ronnie Moore, Ronnie Moore, wherefore art thou Ronnie Moore?"

I cannot tell what the dickens his name is.” Was Ronnie Moore referring to Kudus Oyenuga,  Ebby Nelson-Addy or  or Aaron Tshibola?

For my own part it was Greek to me.”  Allegedly there was talk of Dimi coming back to Pools the season before last prior to his move to 'boer war.' Bet Ronnie could not understand him.

I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it” Nobby Solano / Jack Compton / Robbie Elliott / Steve Howard ...and several dozen others.

Fair is foul and foul is fair”  Carl Boyeson, occasional referee.

If music be the food of love make mine a Pukka pie (That's the home version).
If music be the food of love  Are we stopping off for fish and chips at Wetherby or what? (The away version)

This time next year I hope Craig Hignett will be shouting  “We are the stuff that dreams are made of

...and finally one for our long lost friends, last seen in Bishop Auckland - Darlington A66  “True it is, we have seen better days.


In the culture section of the next Monkey Business we feature:

Emily Bronte's 'Wuthering Heights' in relation to to the peeling paintwork on top of the Mill House Stand.

Ritchie Humphreys gives a critique of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and their links to Peruvian poetry in the latter half of the 17th century.

Jamie Vardy discusses his new film 'I Was Albert Steptoe's Double'.

We investigate why the Mona Lisa does not have a “made in Italy” sign stamped right across her face so visitors to the Louvre museum in Paris are not under the impression that she is a French lass.

* All the words in italics, excluding Wallace and Gromit's, are either from the Bard's very own quill, or are how many people think he wrote them (rather than how he actually did!)
*A Magnum of bubbly
(exclusive to Aldi)


Help required.
Despite many hours of debate, the team at Monkey Mansions were unable to adapt Shakey's best-ever quotation “Get thee to a nunnery” to anything Pools-related (Jonathan Franks perhaps?)

A Magnum of bubbly* will be awarded to the reader with the best suggestion.

[While I may have lived in Shakespeareland for longer than the man himself did, this is nothing to do with me - Ed]