Monday, 9 January 2012


Evening all,

First of all, and this is becoming a regular Monday occurance, the blog is late and I'm sorry for that. I could spin you a yarn about wintery conditions meaning I had to de-ice the car this morning and was running late for work as it was and, for the most part at least it would be true, it would at least drag me somewhere onto this week's theme- Winter.
I found this a difficult place to start a poetry blog. Pressed for time and faced with thoughts of bleak days and leafless trees, I figured that a poem would be the only way forwards. A first draft, under time constraints but, I guess it sure beats a drawn out ramble from me about blank pages and snowy scenes. Anyway, here it is. Special mention should go to my younger brother, Craig, for his enthusiasm for something I never could get into really, but it seems his birdwatching (and my taking him before he could drive himself) has produced at least something for me to work with.

Over Wintering

Like a knock on the door they come, familiar
with necks craned against the blacked out forest sunset
their feathers beating with the strength of a grown man. 

The paddling orange air-brakes do their bit
as a man called Dave and his wife acknowledge the arrival
note with precision the time they ski across the runway. 

They come here every winter he says, 
September twentieth last year. Him, her and a clutch of cygs
they fly half the world to have Christmas with the kids.

It never really clicked for me. No real interest, 
except maybe an inquisitive flicker- when avian flu came round
I trusted nothing from Russia, nothing that could fly.

That guy Dave though, he knew. Made his own predictions,
took tests and got the hell out of there by spring. 
Nothing to see, he flew off, made for warmer climes. 

I trust he'll be back now. Sat, binoculars twitching over darvics
waiting, pen in hand, for the flight in from Iceland,
net at the ready for the morning customs check. 

Thanks for reading, catch you all next week.



Lindsay said...

Are they swans? Lovely imagery, I could picture them skidding on to the water. Great post Shaun.

vicky ellis said...

Ahh, a poem about twitching. Lovely. You watch those birds long enough and you realise they're only interested in one thing. Or is that just me?

Worth the wait :)

Ashley R Lister said...

As Vicky said - it was worth the wait.

And it's got me thinking...

We could do with a week where we each bring something to the table that no one else is likely to get. Shaun - you could tap Craig for a deeper insight into the appeal of birdwatching.

It might make for a fun one :-)

Great post,