Rain

3c2c68665f4de5739ce7893ef1c7f59e

For nights and nights and nights I lay on my pillow, worrying, listening to the rain, even though the skies were clear and starlit and the moon shone through my window like a lantern and I wondered what else I was hearing that wasn’t there or not hearing that was until one day I had my ears syringed with warm water and the wax flowed out in little honey-coloured clumps into a dish the nurse held for me and I no longer heard it rain except when it did.

Barking Mad

IMG_20181205_153200

There’s a wine called ‘Barking Mad’.

I liked it so much I bought six bottles and drank them all.

Not in one night, of course.

There have been times when I have been barking mad:

Over the insurance company’s delay in fixing my storm-damaged gate because ‘it is just a gate’,

Over next door’s yippee yappy dog who goes off when I piss under the lemon tree at night alarming the neighbours and the back lights go on to see what’s up [ Can’t a man piss in peace? ]

But mostly it’s the scammer with the heavy Slav accent who phones every few days to tell me my internet has been infected and will be turned off unless I phone a certain number.

It hasn’t been turned off yet and I haven’t phoned.

Over petrol prices that go up and down like a wild week at the Dow Jones.

I could go on but you get the idea.

Everyone is a Howard Beale barking mad at something.

Not a Black Cat

rooster

It was not a black cat

But a red rooster

That crossed my path this morning

On my way to gym.

I waited

As it waddled past the car

Oblivious to the honour

I had accorded it.

 

Why the rooster crossed the road

I do not know

Though it waddled

With intent.

It had the whole day

In front of it

Provided it did not cross

Too many roads.

Greater Expectations

63eec936822285.572a5de035dc6

Someone once said to me, Expect the Unexpected.

It seemed daring at the time so I took it on board.

The only problem was because I expected the Unexpected all the time I wasn’t really surprised when it happened.

It was expected, right?

Life was losing its surprise factor.

I felt heavy as a watermelon.

My counsellor suggested — wait for it — Expect only the Expected.

So I do,

When the Unexpected happens I light up like a lantern

twinkle like a star.

It wasn’t expected, right?

Uncle Bert

flynn

I remember Uncle Bert.

He had had a stroke.

His mouth was always open

Though he never spoke.

 

He sat on his armchair

Alongside Aunty Pat

Who did the speaking for him.

She was good at that.

 

He once looked a film star

A Gable or a Flynn.

And often charmed the ladies

with a rakish grin.

 

But then one day he emptied

and forever after that

Loyal as a labrador

he followed Aunty Pat.

 

 

Mystery on a Bridge

bridge-13307985005Fn

There was someone on the bridge

Curving high over the dark water

About half way along

Then there wasn’t.

Someone with a mop of ginger hair

an orange top and grey track pants

Standing against the railing

Looking wistfully out.

I looked away when a siren sounded

On the headland then looked back.

No splash.

No disturbance of any kind.

No bright lithe form spearing

Through the water.

No one emerging from either end.

Nothing.

Just someone standing on a bridge

in a forest

Then there wasn’t.