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'Times have changed' seems to have been the thought  in several competitors' minds when confronted by the BBC guidelines of 1930 barring 'suggestive references to honeymooning couples, chambermaids, fig leaves, ladies' underwear (e.g. winter drawers on) animal habits (e.g. rabbits) lodgers, commercial travellers'. Some took their cue from what John Cooper called 'Reith's Rules', others from the competition's title. With thanks to all those who risked the posthumous Wrath of the Wraith of Reith, below in no particular order are the results of the autumn contest.

Maid with tray looking left knocking on bedroom door

I. V. Neversere: A Victim Of Lord Reith

I wrote a show to win applause
With rabbits dressed in winter drawers,
A loving couple, newly-wed,
Plus chambermaid, it must be said –
No figleaf here, or nod and wink,
She just brought up a steaming drink..

Commercial travellers? Yes, a pair,
Who "worked in ladies’ underwear’’
And lodgers, not at all risqué.
Or Ooo-er, Missus, oh, I say!

I thought it would appeal to all
From seedy slum to stately hall
As it was wholesome, fun, and light–
But not that Scottish ‘Wuthering Height’ . . .
Cast out, the Bush House portal shut,
I turned to seaside postcard smut!

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John Wood: The Crimes They Are A-Changin’

A minister need not resign
If caught with his pants down – that's fine.
    But "Simmer down, dear!
    Will end his career
As will crossing a lockdown red line.

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Daniel Galef: A Sensitive Censor

Our first show was a smash! A sensation!
But the censor thought fig leaves were “blue.”
She demanded a full emendation
And a thirteen-cent Lewdness Fine, too.

She said, “Gad, this script stinks! Not a scant amount!
It reminds me of scents that a pig leaves.
But these fig leaves – these fig leaves are tantamount.
I’ll approve if you write out the fig leaves!”

Fuming like censers we scribbled
(We perceived we’d offended her taste)
And produced a new draft half as ribald:
Being chastened, we vowed to be chaste.

And, as for the leaves (since the sense or
The cents or the scents so reproved ’em),
In sensing incensing the censor,
We acceded, and gladly – removed ’em.

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Mike Mesterton-Gibbons: Winter Drawers Gone

A beautiful maid who went skiing,
Stark naked, has courts disagreeing.
   One judge is for jail,
   But another – a male –
Is for crime reconstruction, then seeing!

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Susanna Clayson: Lingerie Bonhomie

Friendship is like underwear – we chose our mates and knicks with care
My briefs and pals come with no strings so we are pants at tieing things.

Good ones have your backside covered, though can fall down, as I’ve discovered,
when they hang loose or don’t sit right, cracks can appear when they’re up tight.

Cheap and nasty never last, they get pulled up and down so fast,
they simply cannot stand the strain, give up on you and are a pain.

The naughty ones are more transparent – make the bottom line apparent.
Reveal, without the need to speak, too much arse with bare-faced cheek.

Single knickers come in a pair while carefree, single friends go bare.
Just as friendship can go wrong, so it is with a twisted thong.

Best friends are hugely supportive, made of strong stuff that does forgive.
They’re comfortable snuggle-chums and look exactly like my mum’s.                

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Jo Scutch: Colours Of The Times

In the days when the wireless was new
Lord Reith banned all jokes that were blue.
    It was clear that he felt
    Regions south of the belt
Contained things that were truly taboo.

A pair, say, of warm winter drawers
Might attract hearty laughs and guffaws
    But would propagate crudity
    Almost bad as full nudity
And its breach of the relevant laws.

Times have changed, as all must agree,
Now a word that begins N- or P-
    Can be the hot ticket
    To expose Yorkshire cricket
While the filth on the Beeb’s flowing free.

Graphic of cat curled up asleep on a book facing right