The old guy on the run-down farm
by the motorway on the edge of town –
Aqualung they called him,
after the Jethro Tull song –
said the puppies were going to ‘join the navy’.
The youngsters in the gang
thought this sounded
like a great adventure
and explained the excited wriggling
of the puppies in the stiff cloth sack.
I knew better
but didn’t want to say anything
lest I be associated with such a horror,
but I suppose by not saying anything
I was in on it.
By way of revenge
I felt I was that old guy years later,
smuggling cast-off teddies
in a black sack out to a skip.
Decorate and de-clutter,
the estate agent had said.