Tuesday, February 27, 2024
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‘Magic metal honours’

Messieurs Plant and Jones
sit nonplussed.
Only Jimmy bounces around
like an excited schoolboy.
In their place of honour they sit,
these elder statesmen of heavy metal,
bemused, bewildered.
The audience falls to an expectant hush,
Nancy Wilson gives her sister a long look
and strikes the familiar opening chords,
like balm to overwrought Boomer ears,
harkening back to their misspent youth.
Ann’s commanding contralto proceeds,
“There’s a lady who’s sure …”
As she relates the tale
of the hopes of a spiritual eccentric –
Ooh, it makes me wonder …”
The gospel choir of youthful beauties
have now joined her
with a gentle, “Ahah, ahaaa …”
“Your stairway lies on the whispering wind.”
The frenzied metal guitar solo explodes,
adding to the building conglomeration of sound.
The audience is riveted, transfixed, transported.
Suddenly, another reveal!
A curtain rises – a vast bowler-hatted choir
add their voices to the glorious cacophony!
The stage is a chaos of voices, choirs, instruments.
The audience sit as if mass hypnotised …
Did Robert wipe away a few surreptitious tears?
A long pause before Ann declares her last line,
“And she’s buying a stairway to heaven.”
Bowler-hatted Jason Bonham rattles his cymbals
to signal the end, but
not before a heavenward glance,
eliciting fatherly approval.
The elder statesmen of heavy metal themselves,
stunned by the emotional intensity of the tribute,
stand up to applaud their own appreciation,
before the rest of the house explodes
in a volcanic standing ovation.

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