The Sea-Goat’s Ballad

I am the waterway’s King of Procrastination,
The limping kingfisher delayed
Accepting his halcyon coat and medal,
Now roaming the River Wensum’s riddles
With a browning worm-fed throat
Where parents at the weekend paddle.
Or the pterodactyl, bird of bones,
Putting off the flying home to losses,
His own extinction outmanoeuvred.
With intent to write about this life event
Conceptually, I was hijacked again
By the typist-side of the sea-goat’s mind
Habitually hiding his own ink’s ribbon
Until I gave up trying to find it,
A bitter game, a way of living,
With promises of a better posting
Even though the doormat stuck to its task
Of being devoid of sea-songs so assiduously.
I secrete forestalling tactics glandularly,
And the art of self-sabotaging
I have dedicated my life’s training to
Masterfully; a black-belt in adjournments.
If the absurd deferment is a baccalaureate
I would have my masters met.
The devil dictates the diversion
And I am duty-bound to agree;
The newspapers said in the stars it is written
For a monthly subscription fee.

There are no signposts any longer,
(They were all dismantled,
Like the example implanted at Land’s End
Where you had your photograph taken
In the 1960s, a dead dog at your feet;
Black and white film, silver halides
Invisible to the naked eye,
You handed the film to a pharmacist)
As to what this man should be,
No route map, no junctions;

I looked at my hands and my hands
Became stumps in front of my eyes;
On infested trees they painted black rings;
A sarcophagus of numbers,
The symbols were stowed in your ribs,
Victoria sponge and a cucumber sandwich.
I cannot write, I cannot speak,
I cannot say why I survived such tragedies;
And so I wait, and would do anything which means
Avoiding the Fates of myself while they search
The dank marshlands and mallow-seas,
In my sea-goat’s cave, staring at an empty page
And a photograph of you, with a labrador, and me.