I. It sat by the fire with two fowls in its hands, two mechanical eyes to each fowl that saw the scene: the nice wood, nice man, the curving walls and down below a bathtub of copper, a big clock belly with an open face. The man reached in with a wrench.
II. The nice man reached into the bowl to garble the owl that sat on its throne and sang all the songs. He garbled its wings with little twists so they swung like the legs of a little maimed horse, and he garbled its silver beak good with a smash, and then that little pyramid fell and didn’t sing anymore.
III. The pyramid didn’t sing anymore like this: O, the cowl o’er my head, the rough black sack, the bag over the moon, I jumped off the castle, the moat, the monster, the golden man down there, the man with one arm in the machine.
IV. The machine held the one arm of the man to its face and made gestures as if to say that it was the mayor, the chief, the engineer. As if to say that the wrench were its mustache, its special new teeth, its favorite little chompers, and if the owl were not ungarbled, the pyramid not unfelled, and the moon not unbagged then it would chew the nice man’s skin and bite at his bones, but the man sat slumped, the fowl saw, and could not move.