This is Part 24 in Esther Hyams’ series of poems on the life of Anne Boleyn.

Dissolution of the monasteries

Furness Abbey
Furness Abbey

Monks were disembowelled before their death
Such agonising pain in their last breath
This would add to the unpopularity of Anne, the Queen
To whom they would blame, for these deaths so obscene.

It was easier to condemn the falcon, the King’s concubine
Than to blame the King of England, a man so divine.
There was destruction of abbeys, priories and institutions
The Catholics felt so completely betrayed at this dissolution.

But it brought the King of England a further eleven palaces
With such wealth and splendour, jewels and golden chalices.
The Badges of H and A entwined were shown in glass and stone
Replacing those of the pious Catherine’s in her previous homes.

Anne was the new order as she loved all this religious reform
Wanting to break out of convention and the accepted norm.
Anne Boleyn’s jewelled and elegant presence by the King’s side
The sight of which so many Catholics could not abide.

This meant that Henry wanted to make England an empire
The Church would bring him and England glory through his desire.
And no matter what zealous Catholic resistance would come
The Church was subject to the King – in this battle Henry had won.

At Hampton Court, Anne was placed near her husband, the King
Catherine had always been separate, as a son she did not bring.
There were now formal gardens and huge heraldic beasts
Along with a new great hall for many sumptuous feasts.

By Esther Hyams

Click here to read the next poem – “Henry’s Wandering Eye”.