The man who had no tale to tell

Once upon a time

Not so long ago

In a land not far from here

And one you probably know

There lived a man….

Mediocre was his name and mediocrity was his creed

For danger and excitement he felt no personal need

Middle class and always middle of the class

He took every opportunity to let opportunity pass

Now I know this man and I know him well

I never thought he’d have a tall tale to tell

Well he told this tale and he told it well

This faceless little man had been through the gates of hell

It was his hobby to drive right across the nation

Collecting train numbers at every existing railway station

He’d write them all down in a little black book

Like an illustrated gospel for all the care that he took

Every, entry, entered and itemised

The quality of his work would not be compromised

At this single thing did he really excel

And that is the reason that he went to hell

One evening as he drove right across the nation

Collecting train numbers at every existing railway station

His car broke down on a high mountain road

And he knew enough about cars to know it would have to be towed

He’d never felt the need for a mobile phone

No one ever phoned him and he’d rather be alone

Like a big black dog after a particularly juicy bone

Who answers his masters’ voice with a heart of stone

Well there in the distance was a welcoming sight

A bright little light in the beginning of the night

It really was a welcoming sight

That bright little light to keep away the fright of the night

Like a moth who doesn’t understand the nature of flame

Or a young schoolboy who doesn’t know the rules of the game

Entranced by the light he walked towards its’ spell

And he walked right through the gates of hell

At the bottom of a valley was a nice little house

Where lived a nice little farmer and his nice little spouse

They lived out there all alone

And they’d never even thought of getting a telephone

They offered him a meal and a bed for the night

They promised he could meet their price all right

All he need do is spin them a tale

But they didn’t tell him what would happen if he should fail

Well he accepted their offer and he accepted it real fast

And they all tucked in to a healthy repast

Roast beef washed down with good homemade beer

As far as he could see there was nothing to fear

Syrup pudding with a jar of thick Jersey cream

Followed by thick chunks of cheese that would make him dream

But never did he dream during all this fine fare

That this whole experience would become a frightening nightmare

They settled down to coffee and little minty chocs

Sitting by the fire in their slippers and their socks

And that’s when they asked him to pay his due

As smoke and sparks went up the flue

He had no tale to tell

He had never done or seen anything worth the telling.

Oh the sky caved in and the earth exploded out

And he fell into the pit of hell with a mighty shout!

Devils and demons stabbed him there

Against the burning fire of hells’ reflective glare

The hounds of hell chased him for a spell

Until he took refuge in an un-holy well

Where sickened and giddied by the awful smell

He regretted his life had left no tale to tell

He waded his way across the sorrowful pond

He swam through the treacle of the slough of despond

He ran across the bridge of dark despair

But the grass wasn’t any greener over there

A thousand weeping willows wept for him

Filling his cup of sorrows up to the brim

He got lost in the forest of lamenting souls

But he could not escape the burning coals

He met politicians and preachers and civil service men

All condemned for condemning other men

Law-givers, lawyers and makers of the law

All left stranded on hells’ desolate shore

The limiters and rulers of what should be a limitless life

Those who like to create trouble and strife

For every little rule that they’d ever devised

There’s another section of society that they’d criminalised

He pondered and he thought and he finally realised

That he did possess the thing that they most prized

Oh the sky caved in and the earth exploded out

And hell spat him out with a mighty shout!

They settled down to coffee and little minty chocs

Sitting by the fire in their slippers and their socks

And that’s when they asked him to pay his due

As smoke and sparks went up the flue

He told them his tale

And it began

Once upon a time

Not so long ago

In a land not far from here

And one you probably know

There lived a man….

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