Fleeing jeering
Schoolboy taunts,
Book under arm,
Spectacles askew
Nose bloody-
To the gardener's shed
Where fairies dance
And princesses sleep,
Awaiting true love's kiss-
Behind the briars
In the comforting
Darkness
Among the scythes
And pruning hooks;
A wizard's secret cave.

Stepping into the
Welcoming twilight,
Paris Green and nicotine,
You fall over the
Gardener's body,
To the dusty floor-
Well-dressed strangers
Rise about you,
Garments rustling
In the stifling air,
An Irish voice says,
"We've a tiddler here,
Who's for a light repast?"
The smell of blood
Is in the air.

Three strangers pass you
From hand to hand,
A golden lady,
An Irishman
And a girl with
Glittering eyes.
You drop your book
Of fairy stories,
Useless,
Nothing in it to
Protect you.
No talking donkeys,
No magic bones,
No wishing rings of gold.
You begin to cry.

"How very boring,"
The golden lady says,
"I'm going back to sleep–
Angelus, 'tis all your fault,
This filthy lair."
Leaving you to
The Irishman
And the girl with
Glittering eyes.
Who look down at
Your small boy's self,
Laughing at your size,
Your helplessness-
Splendid bullies
All grown up,
You wait for it to start.

"Our Darla's right,"
The tall man laughs
Down at you,
"'Tis boring, this-
I've better things t' do."
Strong cold hands
Lift you up
Chill mouths lip
Your throat;
Then the girl
With glittering eyes
Giggles in your ear,
"Let this one be,
He's one of us-
Bloody are his hands!"

They argue
The Irishman
And the girl
With glittering eyes
Then he laughs,
"Oh all right!"
With an Irish boot
Against your bum,
You sail into the
Mocking sunlight,
Book abandoned,
Short pants wet,
Landing in the dirt-
To run sobbing
Into the future.