PREVIOUS NEXT FIRST SIR TIN, "The amiability & pliancy of our stalk-lives...


Canto The First
Altdorfer's Battle of Alexander
"The amiability & pliancy of our stalk-lives
serve but to hide our cobra purposes

from th'victims' eyes," said Sir Tin
to Lord Whacko along their way
to Court, soliloquizing each pebble
with a foot. Saying: "So, as you awake,

to walk so comfortably under the Autumn's
shades--Because it's not the cold Winter
belly/shadow of some unexpected Beast

Perhaps"... Mister Chittledick chasing
the gyralling petals of the sunniest Spring

or Larry O'Luck th'peasant who stopt his plowing
long enough to wave to the passing conqueror,

or Sir Sidney Sillyfut himself
that conqueror, who thought he had
changed the world

by a wave (back) and was swallowed up

by history like a drop of dew
into the hulking blues of Heaven
"Look deeply enough," he said

before a sunlit daring
to one Malcolm Tent following

the careless obvious winds down
some welcoming Woods so

mystic, "Look into th'crystal
being flowing in their midst"

ignoring the rain so taut, Sir Tin, in
the confusion of the sure, ripped through
those silken pinnacles, the doubts
of his fellow men, with tearing shouts

& praised Sir Oliver Twit for
his collection of the worst mementos
of the millenniums bestowing

in deepest resignation his blessings
on Eldo Rado, Italian explorer
of the Queen's, favorite of Mister Hucklebuck
the Prime Minister, as he walked
under the shades,

         those sinister
villages of oboes multi-voiced
chasing him & orchestras of orchid-scents'
sweetest poisons like some mighty
grand conductor, old Sir Tin
up in his clouds: unbuttons his heart

& from his podium of blood (puddings)
pees in the general direction
of Dame Nuky and Lady Tyrt accompanying the Queen!

... "Holy!..." Only then does he realize
he has stumbled upon Her Majesty's hidden retreat
& caught her shaving her mustache! (so-to-speak)

O tragedy! O enormity!... What a fall

(for the person who proved beyond a doubt
that astronomical Polish fellow Kaplush
was all wet for claiming we live in a well
rounded World)...

      Insanity! You better smile
bitterly, you raw original cringes, you
ancient unconvinced beasts outwardly rational,
inwardly but creatures of the Id battering

brains against the bulkhead, woodwinds
in the cucumbers, flutes & th'cold limbs
of dead trees, et cetera Sir Tin threw himself

on the mercy of Billy Doodat, Her Majesty's Chief
Magistrate, and offered him th'essential
apostles of Praise, rust in the shoulders,

th'attics waiting golden upstairs, Imp
the dispassionate, pilgrims like pigeons
of late, a mention like an embodiment of Fame
(that they may not turn out to be in the end:

Fall's gypsy moths seeking to plant
with their cutting) eyes their parasitic eggs
in your mistful blind-to-all-lies, deep resignation
taking over his concentration, Sir Tin sat

in a chair of his lawyer's house: "O, You
mustn't sit there!" cried out Sir Suckley
(shocked) to him                             
                  --Why? Was it
an especially expensive chair?... "O, no,

good Sir, it's only that that happens to be
the only place in the entire room not covered
fully by the security camera"

                    ... is it any wonder
(while they were walking outside "Life
Is A Most Ridiculous Thing, hear ye! Hear ye!"
& without missing a beat of his conversation:

"There's nothing funnier than people
who take it seriously!")... he grabbed the pamphlet
some poor man had been hawking, lowered his pants
& went to the ass-istance of his undergarments

(this was that same attorney (so-called) who had been
consulted by the Army (right after its commander,
Lord Victor Disordat, had told them all: "We must
become victors or die! So says His Majesty!")

and then there was that terrible forward rush (which
also made The Church a load of cash what with the
re-baptizings) said...

             The Lord God
of The Old Bailey to him: "Bring me
as many character witnesses as you can
find--" ... O thou

                Silva Saggs (a housewife
from Ramsgate who swore Sir Tin wasn't overweight
at all). And then that fat'n'mad Lord Stumbles

(who spoke as he ate--so he could not be
understood because he mumbles... which was
rather a good thing for Sir Tin, as a matter of

And that gutter-lover Sam Sinks (that was
kept out because he stinks). Also a very ill
Tim Trips was kept outside (because he drips).

But Chathogger Slips and Sedgemuncher Slides
(whose firm represents mostly brides who have
done some surgery on their own hearts): they

assured Th'Judge that up until the very last
second Sir Tin is found guilty: they stood by him.

Sir Albert Falls from Burra Voe (quoth several
Biblical chapters when he was called & was
still sprouting them as they dragged him down the
hall, long after he was told to go).

there was a young lady from Limerick
who performed a well received ballet trick
(she there refused to give her name,
was much-applauded all the same...
& was set down as "just
another Irish lunatic")...

              Mother Slumps (the
famous nun) swore he was an honest man
who had been made so by many lumps;

successful courtier alive, Lord Slithers,
glanced with great pity down upon Sir Tin
where he sat with his pleading grin (& thought it all
quite, "Ha!" But, "He has so many frets
already," he said to the Judge: "I believe
I'll just wait outside until after the trial
to express my opinion--Where can I lay
some bets?")                 

   That merchant: Sir Frederick Flops (who
passed around free samples of his malt & hops, and
got the rocky crowd somewhat solidly behind him,

he testified that the accused was th'best customer
in half his shops: "Drink up, lads, drink up!")

which terrified Peter Hobbs (feeling half naked
amidst so many wigs & robes, said he'd be
willing to say anything at all... that didn't
have to be read... or he'd keep quiet about it all
till well past dead, then fled).

                               And good ole
Sir Tin's butler & cook, Peter Plops: (who took
a good long look at all the wigged tops
and told the Judge he couldn't tell for sure
which of'em'd pinched his mops).

                         While Sir Tin's
saintly girl-friend Lady Skids solemnly told the Judge
that God forbids using his Name to swear... and knelt
in prayer--only to find, when she had risen
to her feet, that she had lost her underwear, and
grabbing them with her hand: she ran waving them
like a madman & screaming through the street). And

that was when Sir Suckley turned the case over to
his junior partner Robert Duckie, whose advice was
that, "For you, ill-lucked Sir Tin, this life is
one of those glitches without reason or source
or Fate which blips existence's Time-line" (for
he was more into metaphysics than into law).

Then he raised his rate by slightly over
thirty percent to cover additional expenses (with
which he had not yet met but was tentatively
expecting) excluding:                        

         Ku Chi Koo (the renowned
Korean philosopher the King sent to prison
to comfort Sir Tin) but, who, being into Zen, &
nothing else, & Sir Tin finding he didn't care to know
about any zen (else) at all... charged up an additional
ginger beer (to him) and drank it all in very tiny
sips, and had not yet finished doing it

when the American Ambassador to Britain Mister
Williams Jennings (W.J.) Biggerbetter, an old friend

three hours later, reached down to the bottom (of
his large being) for some comforting cliche, placed
his hand on the shoulders of Sir Tin and said, "Pal,

you've got nothing to worry about," then (taking
a glance over at 'the chink' sipping his ginger beer)
told him (loud enough for everyone in The Tower
to hear): "Whoever takes a fart--dies!" just as

Sir Tin's Father Confessor knelt soundlessly

down beside the old knight to hear his side of it...
"I have never spent a single day of my life alive!"
said Sir Tin, tearfully, while (between apologies
for his cigar) the American Ambassador complained
that he could not see how Sir Tin had managed it.

"If a friend of yours told you that he was contemplating
suicide--" Sir Tin said to his Father Confessor: "Would I"
(then the good priest interrupted him): "Attempt
to stop him? Never! Why, if I were contemplating suicide

and some well meaning idiot tried to stop me I'd cut
his balls off & then go right ahead & kill myself

(in satisfaction): I, and only I know every least
minutiae of my own life & no well meaning jerkoff
is going to be wanting to tell ME he can judge it

better than meself!?!" Why... was Sir Tin considering
suicide? "Maybe later," just then he had too acute a
headache, and. "Why should these ills befall me?

I consider myself a good man." But there are
no good men--There are no evil men either: Sometimes
men do good deeds & sometimes... "It's enough
I hadn't robbed you, beaten you, or tried to kill you

--That should be enough for any man!" The Russian
Ambassador Futbolkikoff telling him: "Don't be afraid,
comrade knight, ha! You haven't known FEAR until, after
your third bottle of Vodka, you can't find your

         ... "It is!" Ku Chi Koo said (in the best
Oxford available): "Oddly enough, old boy, to let go
is the answer to happiness--If you care too much
there's not much difference then between good & bad
luck: Events will take their own course

regardless of their effect on men (it's how
one takes them which characterizes them, defines
them, makes them the nature of Man)."

man! What are you trying to tell him?" "Cash (on
the barrel head)!" said the American Ambassador:

"In terms of God and Man" added the Father Confessor,

"As it relates to the proletariat's glorious
struggle to establish its glorious tyranny over all
men (whether they work or don't work)," quipped
Futbolkikoff while he wept)...

                        "I mean to say that
selfish are those who view the effects such events
have on but themselves as THE measure of

those events' universal meaning, significance

(calling them good or evil accordingly), such
petty men deserve what they get." In other words:
a sentence of Death!...

        Was his personal philosophy
changed in any way by any of this? No, he was
glad to be alive, and glad that he was eventually
going to die--he just wished it had been more

      which is where that cryogenics genius
Heinrich Reversedefut! came in at The Eleventh Hour
& found Sir Tin trying to sell his soul to Saint Francis

(as well as to various other saints since
he figured that in this world: souls must already
belong to Satan), in vain, barking like a dog
(on his knees) & asked him: "What'n the Blazes
R U up to, man!?!" --Up to Saint Bernard, said
the poor pitiful soul like some contradiction

incarnate, the great scientist sold Sir Tin
on the idea of feigning dying now (and being frozen up

until they finally discovered a cure for Injustice
(the malady that had done him in) something which sounded
exceedingly sound to a man that deafly desperate...

and he was just falling asleep) under the influence
when that hangman Barry Dalive stept in joyously
to inform them all that due to a technicality

Sir Tin had had his life spared (they had misspelt
his name in the warrant & ink was too precious
back then in The Dark Ages to do the rewrite)...

"And, at this late date... can he still be
recovered?" --Never... lose any "ZZZ" over it:

Waterhouse's Destiny
Never lose any hope, "I'm working on it!" But,
I should think, he has to thaw out
in his own good time, all by himself, perhaps

centuries to come... So, through the voyage of time

Sir Tin graced some nameless nobleman's castle,
was kept in a museum (next to a petrified rat)

spent a couple of centuries in a travelling
freak show, was placed in front of one of those
very dippy boats that leaked a lot but never sank
at all, and then was lost            

                 (as all things are
eventually lost) in the mum millenniums... until,
he at last began to feel the washing away
of the ages... to the strains of, "There
Will Always Be An England!" being sung by a
chorus of Space-Age Turks stuck in a bathtub...

"Egads!!!" (He had awaken at the dawn
of Man's return to The Stone Age, after

The Super War: in a very hot climate, where
he was being used more or less as a great big
ice-cube all bent out of shape), and there

he immediately cried out that he wanted to speak
to the British Ambassador (a request
which was followed by many hats in the shape of
question marks set atop all the Turks' embarrassed

heads): "You know," said Sir Tin, "that song
you were just now singing--" And they laughed:
"Why, no such country ever existed, man!"

all the Turks to a one insisted that the tune
only referred to some ancient chinese song
they'd been trying to remember... about a mythical
mad-land (once called Ing-Gland). Although

some of the more imaginative idealistic Turks were
of the opinion that such a country might have
actually existed, since, "You see, I'm a poet,

Dilodidee Dilodidoo at your service" said
the tallest Turk: "There is also a separate legend
about The Last Ing-Glishman being killed
in the catastrophic collapse of a pub
in some mythical province called Southampton"

& that was that! Poor Sir Tin lived a few years
more, as a sort of a travelling madman (but
a profession much more honorable then) & died

of an attack inflicted upon him by his own heart

shocked by the belief that he had just been
bitten by a rabid dog... but was not spared
the knowledge (at last) that the dog had not been
entirely rabid and was only very, very irked...

[This bit I borrowed (in a pinch) from some unremembered
author who probably died of the Greenhouse Effect]:

Sir Tin In Hell: "Jeepers! What am I doing here!?!
Hey, I could've killed a lot more people
had I wanted to (I certainly had the chance).
But I didn't!!!" Satan: "Sir, you are not here
for all the people you could've killed but didn't.

You're here for all those you could have spared
but killed." Sir Tin: "Oh, Okay--As long as
we've got that straightened out."

Bosch's Ship of Fools

For many years afterwards some of the people
of The New Stone Age argued (back & forth)
that Sir Tin had been killed by his belief,

while others of them proposed that Th'Knowledge
was what'd done him in... finally.