THE BLOND-HAIRED BEAST WHO PASSED ME ON THE ROAD
Hitching a lift from Limerick Town
One January day in June,
While the rain in pondfuls tumbled down
Like Indian monsoon.
And it blew so cold I thought my Foe
Was weighing on his scale
Whether to send next Winter's snow
Or let me off with hail.
An Audi pushed its oblong nose
Into my hungry sight.
I signalled as my hopes arose:
"See my distress, Sir Knight!"
A Nietzschean thing in the driver's seat
With rosy cheeks uncreased,
A lithe and leopardy athlete,
A blue-eyed, blond-haired beast
Slowed down, came near the kerb and grinned
Then waved, as he sped by like the wind
With unconditioned glee:
"I see I own a car, I am rich,
Healthy and full of food;
Beggar, I see that you must hitch,
And I see that it is good!"
Each eye like a smoking Armalite,
I watched that shrinking shape;
To the foe of my Foe, to the Angel Bright.
I prayed that a wheel escape,
Or the steering fail, or the four wheels slide
From driver's rein released;
Some towering juggernaut collide
And crush the blond-haired beast.
Oh, had he worn a bilious scowl,
Seemed old, conservative,
Or gnawed away by fortunes foul -
Forgetting, I'd forgive.
But envy - that enduring vice
From softening thoughts exempt -
Must be revenged, at any price,
On good-humoured contempt.
Arrived long since where I designed,
And warm and dry again,
I keep in the murd'rous pit o' my mind
The beast who smiled thro' the rain.