Turmoil Redux

The Scarecrow sighed. Broken nights … broken knights … the lady favoured neither — that was the heart of the matter, broken or otherwise.

That was the heart of the matter: broken? Or otherwise?

His heart broken or otherwise, the Scarecrow sighed … broken and other wise. A decision would need to be made and the princess of Fortune favoured the bold, not the old: if you were out when she called, you were lucky to receive even a note saying “Sorry I missed you.” — the heartbroken … or otherwise incapacitated whilst tilting at Life’s windmills … were not role models.

“We’re not role models — neither broke nor otherwise.”

His reverie shattered, the Scarecrow fixed the Clown with an irritated glare. “What? I didn’t catch that — something about duck-billed platitudes, wasn’t it?”

“The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had no tears — for the rose we water the thorns,” the Clown countered laconically.

“Ah, yes … the Divine Comedy,” the scarecrow retorted sardonically, “God as the rag-and-bone-man of the Universe — his refrain of ‘Any old irony’ echoing through Eternity. How divinely comedic. And our next contestant on Mastermind is a clown — his specialist subject: the bleedin’ obvious!”

“Dear God, how long do you need!?!

All night, if that’s what it takes!”

The Clown sighed: this was not how he had planned to spend the evening — and, more than a trifle ironically, it was rapidly turning into a long one. “Well, I’ll be off then. Let me know if your muse ever calls … I’m sure I can’t wait to meet her after all this time.”

“You’re all heart.”

Broke is what I am … and until I’m otherwise engaged in a better role, I’ll model my behaviour accordingly.”

“Go then … I wouldn’t want to keep you from your tryst with the Fortune Teller after all — I take it she knows you’re coming?”

“You want to be careful … a rapier wit like that might cut you if you’re not. Of course she does; Naomi signed me a kiss earlier and I intend to cash it in — I’m not about to turn up late to find a note saying she’s gone out for the evening instead.”

The Clown having departed, the Scarecrow tried to contemplate, once more, the subject of his dreams; somehow, however, his heart wasn’t in it … his thinking unfocussed.

He sighed — how he longed to taste, once again, Mnemosyne’s kiss.

But she had taken his heart in her hands and clapped with delight at her cleverness — leaving him broken … not wise.

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