Princesses: Where are they now?
(Part Two: Cinderella)
King Charming and Queen Cinderella have been on the throne 65 years and are both still going strong. Some of the more snobbish members of the court joke that the queen, with her commoner’s upbringing, had no intention of wasting her good fortune with an early death. The king, though, attributes their long lives to the vegan diet his wife – a lifelong animal rights activist – introduced to the palace shortly after their coronation. “I never knew a hearty bean stew could be so satisfying until Cinders gave our chefs a few tutorials!” He tells anyone who asks if he misses venison and partridge. “And it’s much more fun riding into the woods to pet the deer than to shoot them full of arrows!” Cinderella, always honest with herself, and not about to enter any self delusion at this late stage of life, freely admits that the court snobs may have a point: remembering the drudgery and hunger of her youth, she absolutely revels in luxury, enjoying every minute of the life of a royal. Something she was less keen on in the early years was the transparently mercenary about-turn from her stepmother and sisters. She tolerated their simpering adulation for a few years, until her husband pointed out that, as queen, she really didn’t have to. Her relatives were placated with impressive sounding duchies as far from the palace as could be managed – with the explicit understanding that any word of her subjects being ill treated would bring about a speedy and ignoble end to their good fortune.
Her silver hair swept up in a graceful knot, Queen Cinderella still likes to play with the (much gentler) descendants of “Rucifee” by the fireside. Charming laughs fondly as she warms her hands at the glowing coals, looking for all the world like the serving maid he fell in love with all those years ago.
Sarah Thomasin is a performance poet living in Sheffield. As well as saying poems out loud at every opportunity, they have had poems published in Now Then magazine, and in two English Pen collections, three Pankhearst Slim Volume anthologies (No Love Lost, Wherever You Roam, and This Body I Live In), The Sheffield Anthology (poems from the city imagined) and Poems For the Queer Revolution. They were also commissioned to create a limerick quiz about gender which appears in Kate Bornstein’s My New Gender Workbook. You can find Sarah online at www.sarahthomasin.com.