Treasure Island

David Lewis Paget

(22.11.1944 / Nottingham, England/live in Australia)

Morning Glory

It was five past three in the morning,
I had tried, but I couldn’t sleep,
The hound across the hall had howled
Then I heard its master weep,
I went to the fridge and poured a drink
Then I topped it up with Beam,
I thought, ‘If I can’t get back to sleep
Tonight, then I think I’ll scream! ’

I hadn’t slept for a fortnight,
There was something in the air,
All sorts of horrible, moaning sounds
That slithered in through my hair,
They say it’s the whine of the wires,
All bunched up on the pole outside,
When the wind sweeps up from the valley floor
Like a bridegroom to a bride.

The couple across the hall had fought
Like a cat with a crazy dog,
I knew that his name was Randolph, and
Some people had called her Mog,
I didn’t know what it was short for
Maybe Margaret, Megan or Madge,
I’d knocked at their door and threatened them,
‘The next guy might have a badge! ’

She stood with the door half open
Looking grim as she spat her reply,
I staggered back at the force of it
But noted the black of her eye,
Her hair was knotted in tangles
And her lip was swollen and raw,
‘I’ll gut you, guy, like a razor fish
Next time you knock at my door! ’

The cops said, ‘Don’t even go there,
They’re a bit like an aching tooth,
If all that you want is a peaceful life
The best thing to do is move.’
They’d called, they said, near a hundred times
But couldn’t be sparing the men,
‘The courts are weak, give a slap on the cheek,
Then they do it all over again.’

The night that their hound had howled, I heard
The sound of a muffled shot,
Then an eerie silence had settled down
In the eaves of the old rooftop,
I listened to Randolph gently weep
On the other side of his door,
Then heard the sound of a trunk being dragged
Heavily over the floor.

I sat and thought, ‘Well, he’s done it then,
He’s finally shot the bitch! ’
The trunk was dragged down the passageway,
‘He’ll bury her in a ditch.’
I grabbed my.44 Magnum, and
I followed at length down the hall,
And when I might have been seen, I stood
And flattened myself to the wall.

The trunk was hoist on the tailgate by
A figure wearing a hood,
I raised and pointed the Magnum, ‘So!
You murdered her, well and good! ’
The hood came off and she turned to me,
The woman I knew as Mog,
‘It’s not what you think, believe me,
I accidentally shot the dog.’

‘We were having a morning glory when
I thought someone came in,
I grabbed the gun and I loosed one off
And it got poor Rin-Tin-Tin.
Don’t tell on us, for it’s hard enough
He was Randolph’s pride and joy,
He only got us a dog because
I couldn’t give him a boy! ’

I shook my head and I walked away,
Went back to pack up my things,
I had to move or I’d go quite mad,
The mad that sleepless brings.
I found a little apartment
By a widow with failing sight,
I didn’t know that she had a dog
‘Til I heard it howl that night!

4 July 2013

Submitted: Wednesday, July 03, 2013
Edited: Thursday, July 04, 2013

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