The bad old ones have come home to roost. I’d forgotten about those bad old ones, those rotten horrible old things, but now that they were back it was as if they had never left. The period of time when they weren’t there is revealed as a foolish illusion, an exercise in pathetic make-believe.

How could I ever have forgotten about the bad old ones? How could anyone forget about them? Once they’re in the picture then that’s the end of it. You can forget about it. That’s the end of the story – it’s over, it’s finished.

The bad old things, the bad old things – how could I have ever forgotten about them? They sit there like dirty fat horrible owls, feathers sticking out all over the place. Squat and shapeless. Ancient beyond our understanding, and infinitely malign.

That’s all they ever do, the dirty old things. They just sit there. Roosting…

They aren’t going to go anywhere. They aren’t ever going to go anywhere. They are roosters. That’s what they do – they sit there roosting, casting their sinister black shadow over the whole world…

They roost, but they roost invisibly, which is why you don’t see them. They have learned not to be seen. They are adept at hiding in plain sight, so that no one suspects that they are there. The whole world is their dirty, filthy nest. The whole world is soiled by them but no one knows that they’re there. We just continue bickering pointlessly amongst ourselves, as usual.

Every now and again one of them stirs, moves around a bit in the nest, and then untold misery and misfortune casts its shadow over the world. Pestilence and war stalks the earth. Then it settles down again and the uneasy, troubled calm resumes – the blighted, corrupted peace of their occupation. They always settle down again. They never go. Almost never, anyway. And if they do, then they always always return…

You think I’m talking nonsense. You think I don’t know what I’m talking about, but I do. I’ve seen them, even though they’re invisible. I’ve caught glimpses of them at the very edge of my vision. I’ve caught sight of them from time to time, as if a curtain had been pulled away to show them sitting there in their own stink.

They don’t like being seen. I remember one time, the only time I’ve seen one of them full on, staring back at me. It was like opening a lavatory door and by accident surprising an extraordinarily wicked and unbelievably hideous old woman sitting there on the toilet, having a crap…

The poisonous look you get as you meet her stare. First surprise and bewilderment, then indignation, and then pure poison. Pure corrosive ancient venom.

Oh I know they’re there, even if you don’t. They’re there alright. They’re always there. Those bad old things. Those dirty rotten stinking filthy old roosters…


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