…a pure thrush word (Edward Thomas)
Crow. Street sweeper. Always there.
Magpies – out to lunch.
two wood pigeons are nuisance callers,
a collared dove, my Grandma, an Edwardian
lady living in my children’s children
but they, aged thirteen, will not be
steam pressers in a Yorkshire woollen mill
yet will encounter similar trials
and no doubt weather them. With millstone grit.
Swallow, memory, and swift, a fleeting memory;
Blue tit, coal tit, long-tailed tit… just kids,
wren, small, overly loud, ignorable, a car alarm.
Seven starlings sqabbling, your mind at four a.m.,
the brambling – fearing to be sent away.
Jackdaws, all your cousins at a family do.
Sparrows, volunteers at the charity shop.
Goldcrest. The chance of winning
on the scratchcard that you impulse-bought
at the garage checkout. Never! But that flash!
Red kite at sky height, something in surveillance,
Chaffinches, a short stand-up routine,
Greenfinch, merchant bankers,
Blackbird, gold digger, street singer on some days.
Songthrush. Does not quite exist – except to be
the voice of the big old newly-minted tree,
pouring its notes into the cup of day
clear honey into Waterford cut glass
arresting. Robin; post-it note.