The shaggy, hunched Werewolf of London stalked the Soho street in the rain, carrying in his left hand a neatly folded Chinese menu pale as birch bark. Displeased at his inability to locate the restaurant whose menu he bore, and consumed with a perfervid yearning for a gargantuan platter of glistening beef chow mein, he shook the night’s rainwater out of his luxuriant fur and intoned:

— Aaaooo!

Halted, he cast a lethal stare with his yellow-irised, slit-pupiled eyes at the hum-buzz neon lights across the thoroughfare to behold Lee Ho Fook’s.

— Aaaooo! the Werewolf of London cried. Aaaoooooo!

- - -


Windowpane rat-a-tat. Rat-a-tat-tat. At that.


What stronglimbed curvespined longdigited pointeared sharptoothed hooklegged bloodjawed lycanthrope is howlhowling around the kitchen door? O better to not let him in, no. Littleoldladygotmutilatedlatelastnight.

—Aaaoooooo! says he.

—Werewolves of London again, says I.

- - -


(Mayfair. The Newspaper-Boy holds a copy of the late edition, ink smudging onto his fingertips. Passers-by slow as they read the splashed headline.)

THE NEWSPAPER-BOY: Extra! Extra! The hairy-handed gent who ran amuck in Kent has lately been overheard in Mayfair! Extra Extra!

A PASSERBY: (admonishingly) Yeh bett’r stay away fr’m h’m. He’ll rip yer lungs out.

THE NEWSPAPER-BOY: (in a newsboy cap, plaid trousers of white and Tuscan sand and mahogany, knee-high black socks, and a billowing linen shirt with the sleeves rolled up the forearm by one-third) I’d like to meet his tailor.

THE PIANO: (ebulliently) Din-din! Din-din! Din-din-din-din! Dun-dun-dun, din-din! Din-din! Din-din-din-din!


- - -


well I saw one Mr Lon Chaney yes he was walking he was gallivanting with the Queen and her retinue yes and I wondered whether their bodies were in a performance a stark imitation of the Werewolf of London but lo also saw I Mr Lon Chaney Junior and he too even he in the midnight hour was with the Queen my God together they engaged in the act and I thought it must be but no it couldnt be yet it was in that moment it could only be the Werewolf of London and deep the marrow of my bones the very bones he himself would crack in his maw if he could I felt the darkest howl in the dark eventide and beheld I a werewolf solitary at Trader Vics lost amongst the tiki the tapa the torches the lagoons the lava and what was it he held to his lips but O a piña colada and a dollop of foam remained the fur of his upperlip and perfect was his hair his hair was perfect and when have you ever seen something like that you cant remember can you and aaaooo he said aaaooo Aaaoooooo.