The Ballad of Dr Scratch

By Paul Thomas.

Paul Thomas yesteryear.

Somewhere in the womb…

Suddenly, somewhere, somehow,
In the land of D.N.A.
Within the egg, x and y,
The chromosomes did play.
A gene of animation,
Began its multiplication.

8 o’clock a.m. arrival…

Paul Thomas at the time of writing.

Arriving as I did,
In the swinging 60s, fashion, hit parade.
The building bricks of what was to be,
Were laid.
So far to go,
So much to know.

Dawn of thought…

Through Beatles, Seekers,
Stones and Dave Clark Five.
Four years old, my scribbles,
Began to thrive.
Being very quiet,
I drew amid the riot.

Time for learning time…

A quick dash through,
The land of school,
From small to seventeen.
Pictures made from multi-media,
Super-8 in between.
Next thing to do,
Get a studio interview.

Meeting a real one…

Armed with line-tests,
Backgrounds, cut-outs, cels.
“Go forth young man,
Off to college, improve your skills”,
He yells.
And so I did,
Me, long haired kid.

Good morning world…

They came from all around,
And everywhere, to know.
All this house of living,
Learning art, could show.
A world wide range,
From smart to strange.

Hello, goodbye…

So long, goodbye, I left,
To join the rattie race.
Deep down in dark,
In Godfrey’s basement,
Was the place.
From what was taught,
I had a thought.

And now on BBC 1…

After many written letters,
Costly telephone calls too.
A summons from the BBC,
To look and see at once,
What I could do.
They took the bait,
Another turn of fate.

It’s tough at the top…

Thus began, the trail of films,
The this, the that,
The everything as well.
Kept on the search, to seek those rare,
Who’ll back, who’ll make, who’ll sell.
As expected,
Another rejected.

Maybe, one day…

When time looks back,
Its weary head, so critical.
Will my mind have made a mark,
On animation at all?
Is there anyone there,
With some money to spare?

Printed in Animator Issue 25 (Summer 1989)