Billy Boyd at the Dentist

Billy Boyd at the Dentist

Mari Flowerbalm's picture


Liner Notes: 

My sister & I were meeting each week to write from prompts. One day a story, Billy Boyd at the Dentist, came about through a prompt. Then this morning I listened to a song by Heid, a new addition to our 50/90 family, and it gave me an idea for a new song. While I was looking for my 50/90 song file doc. to begin writing this new song idea down, my eyes lit on the Billy Boyd story title, and instantly I knew I had to make a song of it. Such is the meandering path of my inspiration.Now I'll have to go re-listen to that song by Heid. BTW, go listen to all of Val (Heid's) songs, they're frickin' great.

This is more concise than the story but still pretty wordy. There are also some dodgy tenses, but I'll smooth them out later. maybe.


“What are you doing in there? This is a private office. No varmints allowed.”

The older man accosting me had a white mustache
he was dressed in the uniform
of a school supervisor straight from 1948
tweed vest and bowtie with high waisted trousers
sagging his tiny hips, hugging his sad whiskey belly like that old, drunk friend you see in a bar & usually avoid.

I knew whiskey must be his drink from his veiny, bulbous nose
the kind of nose that dominates the parts of a face
not obscured by his wild mustache & brows.

We stood in the office of my new dentist; I’d been waiting so long in the chilly empty room

I’d started sneezing, so got up to wash my hands. Then this man--
This man came in the door behind me
and pf course immediately assumed
what people always assume when they can’t see
my face, and even sometimes when they can. I realized with sad dread what would come. Valiantly I tried anyway—
“I've an appt. with Dr. Smithfield. “ I sighed and dried my hands.
“Where’s your mother, lad? You shouldn’t be in here alone.”

“My mother” I said & turned to fully face him, “died 38 years ago. She cannot be here with me today.
She’s buried at St. Williams down in Glasgow.”

I waited. He looked, really looked me over, for the first time.

I watched it hit in waves— oh it's an adult. Oh, he looks familiar. Oh my Christ, it’s—
“Peregrin Took!” he cried.

"I prefer Mr. Boyd, if you don’t mind sir. Do know how long Dr. Smithfield will be?”

With sinking heart I prayed that he wouldn’t give me THAT one answer, but as always, my prayer was denied.

“I’m Dr. Smithfield, Mr. Boyd. I’m most heartily sorry I didn’t recognize you. Won’t you sit down?”

I did. It was going to be a long, long day.

Please keep your comments respectful, honest, and constructive. Please focus on the song and not the demo.


mike skliar's picture

interesting- more of a short story then a song lyric tho, perhaps?

Heid's picture

Ooh, this has a really interesting feel to it. I like the repeated sounds in some of the phrases. "Sighed and dried my hands", is a neat one. And "straight from 1948" has a lot of cool crisp sounds to it. Intriguing overall!
Thanks for the shoutout! I'm excited to hear that you're feeling inspired, looking forward to seeing what you might make soon Smile

Roddy's picture

That was a cool write. Are you going to add music?

Marilisa's picture

This made me laugh - really great! I can hear it as a kind of talking blues. Very fun!