“Tatter, tatter, naught and matter,” hummed the old drunk as he stumbled across the cobblestone. Every other lamplight was blown dark by the gale. Those that stood valiantly against the inky black of night did so in feeble enough mien.
He sang more loudly, a rasping challenge to the wind and clouds, “Mind me little, jot and title, but ere the dawn, I will be gone!” He paused, hiccupped and seemed to consider his rhyme. Unable to fathom any meaning in it himself he set back to his bumbling way.
Thoughts of home beckoned him. Memories of a door now barred deterred that path. Sighs of years gone by robbed his breast of breath. Taunts of an evening long on drink and short on affection kept the wind at his back. The port, and through its eager ships the sea called him with desire indiscriminate.
His mind struggled to recall a sea shanty. It failed. His feet plodded sadly, stalling for hopes of another way to open. They failed. He wanted to remember better times and better reasons. He failed.