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A Book About Bedtime?

Updated: Aug 14, 2020

House clearers emptying a cottage in Chilfrome following the demise of its owner 93-year-old Mrs Geraldine ["Geri"] Attrik have made what auctioneers Sotherbone's believe may be the find of the decade: a bound manuscript copy of a set of poems written by Professor Thrupiece and left [or lost] in the cottage when he and companion Shelley-Lulette Sizemore vacated the premises after a year-long sojourn in the early 2000s. The couple had escaped to their Chilfrome "love-nest" [Sydling St Nicholas Sun, 4th September 2003] in mid-2003 following public exposure of their joint enthusiasm for horizontal jogging, explicit art and late-night horticulture. It was during their retreat to Chilfrome that the famous Intimate Portrait of "S" was completed - perhaps the most explicit rendering of Professor Thrupiece's long-time muse ever to have emerged from his over-fecund hand.

Professor Thrupiece's "Intimate Portrait of "S"" caused a sensation when first revealed. Some thought it "too lifelike and too explicit to be considered art".

Relatively little is known of the Professor's erotic poetry especially from this period. Popular anthologies [eg Selected Thrupiece Poems for Family Reading [Threadbone Poets] 2006] naturally exclude the more explicit works, whilst biographies, as well as critical reviews, have tended to gloss over it for reasons of "taste". It has also been widely assumed that the couple's long self-imposed and apparently idyllic isolation during the "Chilfrome Year" led to a honing of Professor Thrupiece's manual rather than his cerebral dexterity. Certainly several of the most famous portraits of Ms Sizemore [rendered in oils, acrylics and clay] date from this period - one in which artist and model seem to have come into a particularly fruitful symbiotic union. That magnificent consummation - represented by an upsurge in the Professor's physical energies accompanied by an obvious stiffening of his resolve - was celebrated in a creative frenzy which resulted in more than 50 different works of art and an altogether novel recipe for Four Cheese-topped Weiner schnitzel. The plastic as wells the culinary arts are clearly the major beneficiary of this fruitful conjuncture but now some suspect that literature might owe it a similar debt.

So far Sotherbone's have been careful to safeguard details of the contents of the rediscovered volume preferring to tease rather than disclose. "Shall we say that the poetry is on the whole rather monothematic, a little obsessive and very explicit. It reveals a man besotted by his subject and playfully exploring different structures and audacious rhyming schemes?" "Who'd have thought he could come up with so many rhymes for words some of us would be embarrassed to share with a loved one let alone a literary agent? If and when it's published this won't be one for Aunt Dahlia's Christmas corsets!"

The volume which will be auctioned at a socially-distanced sale in September is expected to attract global interest and the price may well reach double figures.

Hiding in plain sight. The slim but priceless volume has stood on the same shelf unopened since 2003.

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