Among this trick acknowledgement of mechanical birds
with clocks and keys and stops to check their slow grinding,
the minder dog growls and cat turns sleepily along a ledge,
flicking its lazy tail against stiffened wedges of lemon rind,
once sending lethargic ripples across a surface of gin.
An old curiosity shop of infinite Dickensian depth,
where you never quite reach the old stuffed bear,
standing tall in a forest of fur,
sniffing the air through a mist of mothball,
nonchalantly leaning against the wall.
This room has properties which darken all its colours,
making objects appear indeterminate without outline,
dipped in a cauldron of brown.
An old man wearing a quilted jacket,
frequently mistaken for a waxwork, blinks an eye.