Sat peacefully in his much treasured rocker down at the bottom of the garden
his crony, an unkempt slow worm the tom cat had tortured basking at his side
he chose with eyes wide open to stare intently at the fiery edges of a remorseless high noon sun

An hour or so earlier he had been indoors doing this and that before stumbling
upon her in one of the bedrooms, she up a ladder, au naturel and hanging wallpaper

“Why no clothes?”
Startled she dropped the paste brush, said ‘bollocks’ climbed down and
with hands on bare skinned hips, head caustically lopsided, “Oh all my old togs are in the wash. Got them dirty gardening.”
“Have you no others to wear then?”
“You know full well I have, it’s just that I don’t want to ruin my good stuff decorating.”

That he paused, watched and savoured for more than a moment understandable, more so because
by the time she stumbled upon him
it was much too late, she had missed the boat
the damage had already been done

“They’ve cut down the hedgerows and the sparrows have left en masse. I sense the old buzzard died a thousand deaths when he saw that…nothing left to clutch in those crumbling claws of his…nothing left to feed the kids. Crying shame really. It’s all over now. I’ve seen enough.”
“You really are a batty old fool you know! Now this! So what, you’re disillusioned with the world I know but is that really worth blinding yourself over?”
With circumspect manicured hand on a neatly shaven chin he merely nodded a contrite affirmative aware that henceforth he would have no use for a mirror

She retired hurt shedding a tear he would never see

The aficionado and his cicerone,
Together they had journeyed far and wide,
She would always seek out the unvarnished truth,
The other one adrift without her at his side



  1. Wow! I really like this, Mike. It is beautifully expresses, full of atmosphere and open to several interpretations. Most impressive.

    1. That she forgot completely that there were no curtains at the windows during said decorating enterprise I had to point out to her! She disappeared at a rate of knots after that!

    1. He can’t cope with the ever diminishing hedgerows. It’s the sparrows you see…they live in them and if you’re a bit touched with the funny brush and odd things irk you you poke your own eyes out…at least that’s what we do over here. We bump into each other frequently you know!

    1. The ladder bit is factual! She’s a bit like that sometimes…mind when it’s cold I’ve never seen a woman in so many thermal things! Mad as a hatter is my Shirl…the rest of it was, I think a cameo of me getting pissed off with the world presently!

  2. Hmmm…. Now I see that you posted this around the same time that Shirley announced that she had just wallpapered my room for when I come visit (with no help from you, no less!). Coincidence? I think not! 😉

    1. She approved this one… shall say no more! This guest room had its first visitors last weekend and survived intact…they even said the new bed was really comfortable!

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