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The Rime of the Ancient Sheep Molester

by Danny "Don Juan" Henrey

It is an Ancient Sheep Molester
And he stoppeth one of three.
‘By my long grey beard,’ the lecher quoth,
‘Thou hast a pretty knee!’

‘Take back thy hand, thou greybeard loon!’
The maiden did she cry;
‘Thy breath is rank, and, what is worse,
Thou hast a fleecy fly!’

He holds her with his bloodshot eye,
‘There was a ship,’ quoth he.
He scratched and belched, he rubbed his ear,
And rummaged for a flea.

He holds her with his rheumy eye:
She could not chuse but hear.
‘’Tis short but sweet, my pretty one,’
Quoth he, with fearsome leer.

‘The ship was cheered, the harbour cleared,
Merrily did we drop
Below the kirk, below the hill,
To the strains of ZZ Top.

And all upon the good ship Teg
Were clad in boxer shorts;
Our cargo was of telescopes,
And forty crates of port.

The sun came up into the sky,
And stayed there for a while!
And went away after a bit,
With a sunny little smile.

The clouds did close, and night did fall,
And Hoey munched on toast;
He fixed the crew, and jawed for hours
Of vampires, sharks and ghosts.

The ship, it moved with gentle sway;
The shore we ’gan fast lose;
The breeze, it sighed about the sheets
Like soft unearthly moos.

And Oakley, with his cross-bow strong —
My lords, ’tis hard to trow! —
He raised it up, and with a bolt
He shot a FLYING COW.

The cow, it fell into the sea,
And Oakley trawled it up,
And ’pon vast steaks of beastie raw
We all were made to sup!

Fiona, Daisy, Steve and I
Were fed on beastie meat;
And down our throats, our gullets dry,
Chris poured much Sauternes sweet.

And soon the night, in mantle clad,
It ’gan to pulse and seethe:
And sea and land, with mystic force,
With one breath seem’d to breathe!

And madness on the crew came down,
With visions fair and foul:
A nightmare without rest or end;
In torment did we howl!

The very deep did rot: O Christ!
That ever this should be!
Yea, haggises did crawl with legs
Upon the slimy sea.

And monstrous celery rose up;
Huge beetroots swell’d and burst:
Sliced carrots sharp and grim rained down
Upon our souls accurs’d.

And in our agony, we swore,
‘’Tis witch or daemon’s hex!
How come we otherwise within
This giant Moulinex?’

A flax-hair’d damsel rode about,
On prancing sea-horse bold:
And, where caressed the bows and stern,
There grew thick purple mould.

The devilled crabs, with pincers huge,
Advanced in tow’ling robes;
Raw oysters snapped their briny shells,
And rent our ’quatic clothes.

The horned moon in midnight skies
Shone clear and rather large;
Illumined bright the ghastly scene,
And our décolletage.

Ah! Well a-day! What evil looks
We shot at Chris, forlorn:
He gave a cry, and ’pon his brow
Were fixed the beastie horns!

The night retreated ’fore the sun,
Which glowed with vengeful ire:
With throats unslaked, with black lips baked,
We toasted ’neath its fire.

We sought to quaff the vintage port,
But it was turned to blood!
We sought with ’scopes to look about —
Within did serpents scud!

Fiona glimpsed a distant speck,
That neared with mazy slew:
And as it neared, we grew afeard —
Horror on black wings flew.

The skiff, it moved of its own will;
With mazy course it came:
In the prow, upon throne vermeil,
Sat there a flame-haired dame.

Julietta, Queen of Lost Souls,
With ice-blue glance arose:
Down on the boards, lapped Simon quick
Her Sauternes-sticky toes.

With cool regard she viewed our forms,
And gave a little smile:
‘I’ll see you in the womb of time,
My dears. I like your horns,
You must be of sin sublime,
To dwell in my Land of Porne.’

She whistles thrice and stamps her foot:
The mould away it dropt;
Thrice more she shrills, and garbed we were,
As if we’d lately shopped.

Two rowers’ corses rose up then,
With long and mighty blades:
Listless and blank their visages,
Yet wore they funky shades.

Though green and rotted, pulled they both
With motion strong and free:
And, as we moved, I recognis’d
Mad Jack and John van D!

Chris wailed, as pity wrung his heart,
And moaned, ‘That this should be!
Would I foul Death with might oppose,
And cast far ’neath the sea!’

With thunder crack, the heavens roared,
And lightning flashed between:
The rain, it flew cold down our throats,
In torrents wild and keen.

Hot lightning struck the rowers two,
Who stretched, with waking groan;
Their flesh waxed whole and living: — had
Life into them flown!

And our insides, with grateful shudder,
’Gan void, with ghastly song,
The beastie feast: with tuneful notes,
We blew the ship along!

The harbour lights hove into sight:
The Teg slid past the quay:
The Oak gave thanks, the horns dropt off,
And left his noddle free.

Alighting with unsteady tread,
We walked the earth as ghosts:
And yet tread I the blessed earth,
Around this haunted coast.

For thee, that art both young and fair,
I seek, to tell my rhyme:
Fill thou the hours with love — that way
Thou mak’st the best of time.

The path to Porne, where love holds sway,
Lies in the shining east:
This thought shall set thee on the way —
He liveth well, who loveth well
Alike man, maid and beast.’

The maiden glimpsed his fleecy fly,
And stayed his roving hand;
His smile beguiled her troubled mind,
As he vanished on the strand.

She went like one that has been stunned,
And is of sense forlorn:
A sadder but a warmer maid,
She dreamed that night of Porne.