Very enjoyable puzzle, maybe over a bit quick? Never thought I’d say that!
Retiring copper’s first to get comfortable (5) = CUSHY
retiring = SHY, copper = CU, first = before
Partly for appearance, Boris hired a Hindu poet (5) = RISHI
Mix up letters, fail to deliver with charm? (8) = MISSPELL
fail to deliver = MISS, charm = SPELL
RISHI = Hindu poet; A sage or poet