The day started with a Roman legion of emperor penguins marching up the bed I felt extremely reluctant to leave. I had already woken up in the night to find Eighteenth Century engineers building the world’s first iron bridge on my temple. June was sleeping like a dolphin with one eye open and music was emanating from a cloud that was moving up and down instead of across. I pushed the button on the dog’s nose before finally getting up and walked downstairs with an ancient battlefield dragged across my shoulders. I couldn’t work outside even though the ethereal beings I had planted as philosophical premises were coming alive. As the night straightened its black tights I set up the keyboard in my mouth and blew on it.
I was feeling extremely unwell and went to the doctor riding a rhinoceros with superpowers. I found the doctor to be a very small man who sat on a very large book in the corner of the room. Apparently the over big tome did not contain any information at all but did keep his feet several feet off the floor. He gave me the smallest tablet in the world and, what looked to me like, a gothic torture chamber of preparations – one of which I had to place up my nose like an imitation snake in an early Tarzan movie. I took a very slow walk home, overhearing a lady at the bus stop state that she had spent the night with a cello last played by Pablo Casals – I would have danced a rain dance in response if it wasn’t already raining.
I had been breathing in dead leaves all night and woke with prickles like a hedgehog; I thought to myself that I should have been hibernating and gave the Dominican friar who was scratching our door instead of his chest a tip. After feeding the animals I went back to bed where I built myself a French foreign legion fort and got covered by a sand storm until the afternoon when the patter of flying fish woke me from a Poseidon dream where I had been present at the birth of the very first talking horse. I would have asked for its thoughts on the short length of Hadrian’s Wall I was wearing as a trench coat but it preferred discussing philosophy with a first cousin of Socrates who had emerged from the animal painted cave wall for that very purpose.
I felt the tide come in from over forty miles away and sat in the sand clock chair most of the morning. I was coughing like rain clouds blown over the supine countryside on a very brisk wind and felt that the weather forecast could only get worse. I watched a procession of masked people bring an isolated area of heat and light to my bedside as I reflected on the healing qualities of the dark. I was about to write a monologue to perform when another person entered the room. I thought their eyes looked liked petrels skirting the ocean surface and their mouth was a sunken galleon where the treasure is never found. I rose to stare at the wall, which promptly yawned and looked at the curtain which was showing a thin stripe of outside on its far edge.
Before leaving one dream for another I spoke to the spiny anteater who was selling newspapers on a street in London in the Nineteen Sixties. I told him I was a superhero and could fly and was a bit disappointed when he replied that he would never need to – I told him the news he was selling was out of date and walked off. I am still as unwell as dragon’s breath and painted an orange sky in my head under which a yacht sailed away from one unknown port and headed for another. I first found it difficult to work and then found myself in gaol with Casanova planning our escape across the rooftops of Venice. It was easier for him as he knew what he was being imprisoned for. I waited for the dry ice effect to engage and dressed as a tree frog in the South American rain forest.
I crawled out from the mountain I had been sleeping under, fed the animals food and myself information and then went back under the mountain – although in the interim it had grown legs and was flexing its muscles prior to tackling a twelve mile hike. I noticed that the man who started the race was wearing clock dials instead of eyes but as they were bereft of hands they would not have been of any use in the end. I would have laughed but the bank vole headed people were able to speak several languages which as always I found rather intimidating. Despite this I still unfurled my banner and charged a multifarious selection of enemy before I started to feel even more unwell and had to retire to bed yet again.
Opening the curtains I saw a besieging army in a vast ring around the house. I have always wanted to be the filling in a doughnut and placed two small gargoyles each side of the bedroom window. The summer valley in my head was feeling the cold as a blue whale flew overhead using wings from a Messerschmitt 323 which had got lost while migrating. I followed June and Poppy around the nearest playing fields breathing outside air for the first time in a week while pulling the spirit ancestors of a race of octopi from underneath my rabbit warren hat. The landscape looked like a theatre set and I imagined the furtive rehearsals of tiny thespians; most of which were dressed in medieval costumes with the nearest to me having a hat that looked like an ice cream cone.