For almost two years I sported a mane of dreadlocks. Here is a poem I wrote during that time about the trials and tribulations of having a cool but impractical hair do. I had almost forgotten this poem, but then found the old scrap of paper I penned it on and thought I wanted to record it for posterity. I hope you enjoy!
Sorry, I’ve just sold out
So I get this quite a lot:
“Hey man, erhh… you don’t by any chance know where I can get…”
Which is an interesting start to a question from someone that I’ve never met.
Get what? These fine hippy clothes?
Why yes, there’s a shop called ‘Rainbow Tie-Dye’ that have loads,
I’m glad you like the colours,
You should see some of my others.
Or perhaps they want advice on how to get luscious dreads?
Honestly reconsider, unless you’re not quite wise in the head,
They’re hard and uncomfortable, give them a feel,
And there are all these loose hairs I wear a bandana to conceal,
And then there’s taking showers:
If I wash them, drying them takes hours,
If you want a project get a pot plant,
You can’t really top that.
Maybe they want to know where the nearest bus stop is,
But given public transport in Northern Ireland what’s the likelihood of this.
I’ve even been asked when I’m on holiday:
“C’est dans ma pantalon, no parle Francais!”
But alas, no, what I’m being asked is if I sell marijuana you see,
Grass, blow, skunk and zombie – I’m not quite sure what half the phrases mean.
At which point I could reply, “Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m afraid not lad,
I’m pretty sure that stuff’s illegal, don’t you know that drugs are bad?
I don’t even smoke the stuff myself,
Not even for the good of my health,
You should look beyond stereotypes; they’re all a bit weak,
Even the French say more than just ‘sacré bleu, la baguette, c’est fantastique!’
If you want to chill out just go for a walk at dawn,
Sit on the beach ‘til you bleach your hair blonde,
If that takes too long to fit around your job,
Skinny dip at midnight – you won’t feel more alive than when the Atlantic’s splashing your knob,
Write a song or a symphony, or learn to meditate,
There are so many other things that could make you feel great…”
But I don’t say that,
He doesn’t want my life story with all the trimmings and fat,
Sure, viva la stereotype, I’ll mess him about
And say “Ahh, sorry man, I’ve just sold out.”