Friday, January 01, 2010

Kept Man (wi’ ither folks’ coal!)

My first-foot benison, as Big Ben chimes:
"Lang mae the lums of yir couplet rhymes
Though you live from week to week
Jobless, dependent and kept,
May your rhymes' flumes stay sprucely swept
And reeking!"

* * * * * * * *

2 in the wee smalls, wearily tweaking
Lines as shlothy as milky pobbies –
Calibrating those rhyming jobbies
Till they rhyme unplodding,
As brisk as Wee Willie Winkie's nodding
Who is it loves the man whose nom
de plume is Rogan Whitenails?
She is as kind as the keep he fails
To contribute towards is pressing.
She sleeps upstairs, for sleep's her blessing,
A place where no rhyme goes.
The rhyme-widow, denied a widow’s
Pension, sleeps upstairs,
As still as the profitless wares
Of poesy are abounding,
As wan as Rogan's resounding
Rhymes are pyrotechnical,
As true and non-ironical
As Rogan's devices are knowing.

* * * * * * * *

Ask me "How is it going?",
And I will tell you straight:
If the Rogan Whitenails Estate,
A century after I die,
Can support my smug descendants, why
Can I not do the same,
Right now, for my baby daughter, whose claim
Must surely be more compelling?
And who, from the selling
Of my fusty rhyming wares,
Will benefit - perhaps the heirs
Of my children's children's children!?

Lucubration candlelight,
Gretel is a Crondallite!
Having a baby's a riot:
Having to think about diet –
'Bout fatty acids and vits;
'Bout cradle cap and scratch mitts;
Spooning Calpol onto the tongue,
While listening to Satchmo Armstrong.
I’m a kept man …
But I’m still handy in a fight.

Even the pennies I spend in the night
Were earned by my wife, not me:
She bought the diuretic tea
And the beer called Cheriton Best;
And I leave the toilet unflushed lest
The baby be disturbed.
I return to our bedroom, perturbed,
And I sleep a non-provider's sleep,
Its architect the staid upkeep
I fail to contribute towards.

* * * * * * * *

Crondall’s anachronistic swards
And lawns are swathed in spider
Webs, as the non-provider
Traipses out on New Year's Day;
His somewhat conceited sobriquet
Is parodied malapropos
By bitchy gusts, whispering low:
"Wrong'un, Wrong'un Whitenails”.