‘You took your time’   said the cat
‘What unforeseen diversion?  
‘Herod’s hospitality tent?’
‘Then you must be thick as muck’ opined the ox
‘To bask in that man’s sudden rage
For arcane occult knowledge   –
Then blabbing like a Sat-Nav   –
Travel updates
Details on precise location’

‘Decidedly naïve’   pronounced the goat
‘Your kind of cognoscenti
Wear odd socks
And cannot boil an egg’

‘As for these useless gifts’   a shepherd added
‘Self-referencing   Symbolic’   –
‘Can’t you think of something
More suited to a baby?’   –

‘But because of who you are
I bet they’ll be remembered
While our handy woollen mittens
Won’t get a single look-in
When wise men such as you
Design to re-write history’



Bernard Saint 
Illustration: Claire Palmer






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