Mozz is perhaps the biggest tea drinker in the world. He drinks cup after cup of that lovely hot brew (with milk but no sugar), and he says that once when making a sandwich, the knife slipped and tea poured out of him where he’d cut himself! Some think he drinks so much tea because he’s British - for they’re famous for guzzling lots and lots of the stuff - but the real reason is that he gets all his goofy ideas for his Silly Billy poems when he talks to his teapot!
His teapot is his muse - Mozz loves to talk to it (though it never talks back!), and as he sits there happily talking to his teapot,
with all that tea zooming through him, making his brain work five times faster than those of most people, wonderfully wacky thoughts
just seem to appear out of the air. In fact, in his books there are many poems about his tea and his teapot
like this one:
When I get drunk on tea,
I talk to my ol’ teapot
About things that maybe are
And things that are maybe not.
Of grand philosophies,
Of how the world should be,
And I pour out my heart
And it pours out the tea.
But sometimes we can’t agree
About what should or shouldn’t be,
’Cause the trouble with a pot of tea
It never talks to me!
And as for Mozz’s mother,
well, here she is!
My mother’s not much better though,
The way she juggles cheese
And swings across the living room
Upon the home trapeze.
At bedtime she would read to me
Her favorite recipes —
Perhaps a way to cook a pot
Of steaming buttered peas.
Even though Mozz loved his parents and all their eccentric ways, he knew that he really wanted to explore the big wide world — to see what was on the other side of the wall at the bottom of his garden. So when he was old enough, he packed his bags and set off down Runaway Road. He invited some of his Mozzmates to travel with him too:
We’ll pack our knapsacks on our backs
And follow trolls and dragon tracks
Up over hills, through valleys deep,
Where beauty wakes and giants sleep.
And stop for tea with queens and kings
In countries where the firebird sings.
But still as Father Time speeds on,
We’ll wave goodbye - our journey’s long —
And down ol’ Runaway Road we’ll roam,
Ah, free at last and far from home.
Mozz comes from a town in middle east England called Gainsborough. (If you look carefully on the map you’ll find it.) But as for when he was born - ah, that’s one of the great mysteries of our time. All we can say for sure is that he’s somewhere between five and five- thousand years young! Still, we can learn a lot about him and his family by reading his poems - and by looking at his father and mother! It’s easy to see where he gets all his goofiness from.
For example, in his poem “Family Entertainment,” Mozz wrote about
He likes to ride with obvious glee
A tea tray down the stairs,
And pogo round the living room,
Or leapfrog over chairs.
Around the house he sometimes twirls
A little silver cane,
Pretending he’s the captain of
A small propeller plane.
I often see him practicing
An old Tibetan jig,
All dressed in a silk dressing gown
And ostrich-feathered wig.
He’s grown an extra-long mustache
That trails along the floor.
It can be quite a nuisance when
It gets trapped in the door.
Of course, Mozz thought his parents were very entertaining (especially when it was raining), but living in a house with his
mother swinging from a trapeze and his father sliding down the stairs on a tea tray was not always very peaceful. And to add to the “entertainment,”
relatives and friends were always popping round to visit - his uncle, The Messy Muncher; his aunt,
The Great Plate Cleaner; Aunt Enna (who made
a great antenna when she stood on top of the TV);
and his grannie who regularly came flying in!
Going through the park
Wasn’t that much fun,
Her walking stick
And do you know where that Runaway Road led to? It led Mozz all the way ’round to the other side of the globe, to one of the biggest cities in the world - Tokyo, Japan - a place so much more peaceful than the inside of his parents’ house in good ol’ England.
And that is where Mozz lives now, right in the middle of that great big city. He likes to think of himself as a very silly samurai, and if you are really, really observant, you will find lots of scribbles and poems in his books referring to his home in Japan.
One of the things he most likes to draw is Mt. Fuji, which on a very clear day he can see from his window. He hasn’t climbed to the top of it yet (he’s waiting for an elevator to be put in!), but he loves that volcano’s big nose poking into the air with the clouds slowly floating by like flocks of woolly sheep. Perhaps one day, when he finally does climb it, he’ll be able to stand on the top and wave to all his Mozzmates around the world!