They tame tigers down that way.

It is my habit to keep your letters, on arrival,

unopened on the mantelpiece, among the mementos

and dusty treasure, for sometimes up to a week.

Anticipation being one of life’s sweeter pleasures.

Your bold black hand, the seal of tape (security),

the amusing doodles of hairy noses,

the way you address the envelope Doctor Reeves

are all as good as your signature to me.

*

One 3am, unable to sleep, I opened it and read –

Dear Nick

Matt D has died in a Mexican motel.

The rumour mill grinds, as you’d imagine.

Some say murder by a drug cartel.

And some say the hanging man ain’t even him.

For good measure, Julia S

suggested

auto erotic

asphyxiation.

However,

the official line is suicide.

It does seem strange

that a fella such as him,

with two daughters

back home in Blighty,

would consider such a thing...

He was always the prince of adventures. His stories came on waves. There had been whispers

of sombrero’d dealers, mescaline bus rides, dozes in dust bins, jamming pistol barrels with a finger,

adobe jail cells, unpaid bar bills, very high jinx and very high cliffs. Perhaps a lover, too.

I don’t doubt any of this, but who knows? I’ve read somewhere that they tame tigers down that way.

St. Mary’s Lighthouse 030321

“The fall’ll probably kill ya!”

RIP MD x

22 thoughts on “They tame tigers down that way.

    1. He was quite a character! MD seemed to gather a mythology about himself without even trying. Whenever his name cropped up, a story or rumour was never far behind. In certain quarters, at certain late hours, people would be known to trade their favourite MD tales. x

      Liked by 1 person

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