Great Baboon

In a dream draped with dripping palm leaves
I saw Great Baboon combing his golden hair.
He paused and returned my stare with an air
Of authority that didn’t invite a challenge.

He laid down his comb and sat down there
In the damp dawn grass in his jungle lair
And considered me as a refugee
From something he knew nothing of.

He saw a pink beast that looked at him
With unseeing eyes that hoped for nothing
From this mere ape in my arrogance.

And the Hoopoe howled and the elephant screamed
Laughing at my preposterous intrusion.
Pompous fool with glowstick jewellery.

Then all went quiet and drip drip went the drips
And I squirmed in the silence as a row of bees
As still as full stops considered me.

They spoke together in buzzing song
Then turned as one to Great Baboon
And he smiled and laughed the ripe rich laugh

Of the wiser man I really knew him to be.
And the Hoopoe shrilled a gleeful sound
And I became known as the one who watched

With no comprehension of the world I saw
As I chose to stand and to stake my place
In the hierarchy that shall not be spoken of.

I knew that place would always be
As a fraud and usurper of the real beauty
Of that night of the Great King Baboon.
The god that was to die as my kind and I

Moved to take all for our own.
His laughter still rumbles in storms in the night,
Residual echo of a more natural might
Than our filthy uncaring machines.


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