pinball (25/April/18)

light falls aching from the heart of the sun
bleeding, feeding
space is open for business, in-filled,
filling in the blanks and gaps, oozing it clogs the arteries, almost,
wrapping holes in tangible veils, trails
of streamers, streams of trailers, traffic jams,
no room for errors, no country for old men, random
nests scattered orderly in canopies
to the left of me
the right of me
stuck in the middle, tolerate thy neighbour a branch away
branching out it sways disconcertedly in solar winds,
solar sails, solar plexus puffed up in mock display
chlorophyll fingers of yellow and green, green to gold, brown
to dead for everything a season, reason, rhythm
and rhyme, rock ‘n’ roll long-lived aging bark as
night falls aching from the heart of the moon
and all too soon it’s all over now baby blue when
it had only just begun
and it’s not even June
wane, wane, done and dusted, ash to ash, hand to mouth
time stubs its cold remains out on a convenient arm, a scar
regarded as a spoil of war, a brag, a boast, a toast, boiled
in oil a sky pours down like mercury another century and
we’ll be born Methuselahs, sensory overload infiltration, bloated
deprivation, expectations dashed, a pinch of salt
over the shoulder
off the shoulder
off the cuff
over the cuckoo’s nest
ends are lurking in beginnings, loaded guns, unexploded bombs,
day falls louder than the ear can ever hear,
that deaf, dumb and blind kid sure played
a mean pinball.

© 2018 robert greig

the first note (21/April/18)

blackbird tells the robin it’s time to wake up now… robin tells the great tit there’s just enough light to alight the uppermost branches and sing… or sing-saw-sing-saw as they more commonly do…great tit tells the blue tit not to be so slovenly but get its feathered rump out here forthwith… blue tit tells the chaffinch, the stout and lazy but ever-so proud chaffinch still plumped-up in its plumagelical coat and hoping for a sleep-in after a heavy night out on the twigs… but then the wren will sure to be sure this won’t happen as it’s been there all this time, small as it is, practising its stealth below the light, below the lowest clumps of the lowest leaves rifling through the debris putting food first as there’ll be plenty of time for song later but then sounding a lyric so resounding and ever-long lasting as to knock even the burbling goldfinch off its perch busy doing impression of bubbling brooks… and they all tell the dunnock but dunnocks are dunnocks and being dunnocks and far too haughty refuses to play and pays little attention to demands that he join in the chorus to the noodling of beaks and trilling of tales of flighty adventures from yesterday and always, always, does what a dunnock will do, as dunnocks will do what they want, as dunnocks this is their way… meanwhile the chiff-chaff and willow warbler wait in the wings holding their wings to themselves for now, waiting their turn, for a gap in the looming cacophony, the chiff-chaff hoping then no one will notice they only have two notes and the willow that can’t help but long for something or other, maybe an end to its song that it’s never yet found as its melody trails in descending tones… by now there’s kerfuffle, the blackbird’s aware, there be thrushes of other kinds sticking their oar, or syrinx, into the mix, the mistle and appropriately-named song thrush, the former brings somewhat and edge to proceedings, while the latter a fluid enchantment which the blackbird can only ooze jealousy while jealously keeping its own random tunery lining the dawn… the three of them waiting, waiting to see, who’ll get their first, get the first, get the first early worm, the blackbird, the mistle, the song, who’ll be the first to snaffle a slug or a snail or wrestle the wiggly worm from its hole… not to forget that high upon high the jackdaws stare down wondering what all the fuss is about, what is this thing called a ‘song’, what is this this they call ‘singing’, what it this mellifluous rhapsody strafing the silence that leaks like the dark with each minute that bleeds into dawn… and the rooks, well the rooks, an occasional caw, one here and one there, to them it’s just all so beneath them and anyway they have got nests to build with sticks bigger than themselves so don’t have time to fritter and waste on such minstrelsy ditties, their gavottes and their fugues, sonata, toccatas, rondos, etudes, their mazurkas or serenades, ragas and reels, not least because they can’t do it themselves… and so the garden wakes, wide-eyed and shimmering, hugging the breeze and growing new leaves and all because the blackbird sang the very first note, all the while keeping an eye out for cats.

© 2018 robert greig

few words (15/April/18)

I’ve come to write a few words… there, I wrote a few words…… here’s a few more… I can’t believe it’s almost a third of the way through the year already, but it is… I can’t believe it’s half way through April already, but it is… I can’t believe it but I do, I have too, my calendars, all three of them, tell me so… I can remember when I used to walk down to the big horseshoe bend on the river, across the fields, down and down through the broadleaved woodland, come rain or shine, til I reached the river, the Horseshoe Bend, as it was locally-known as that it deserves initial capitals… few wandered further along the bankside path than a couple of hundred metres, or yards as they were known in those days, after that it got narrower, less trod, the vegetation more determined to close it off and hamper progress, my inquisitive progress, from going further… but that was years ago, though I still can’t believe it’s April already, and not only that but I still have to catch myself in believing I am here in a different century to the one I was born into… too strange…
… here’s a few more… I know it’s there, sleep, I can almost taste it but can’t quite put my finger on it… there it is, on the pillow, waiting and yet… not even the blackbird’s awake yet, I know because he’s not singing… how does he do it, on waking the first thing he does is sing, and sing well too… my first though on waking is tea, tea, then breakfast, then more tea, singing is way down my list of first thing I do upon opening my eyes of a morning and most definitely the last thing anyone would want to hear anyway…… mellifluous I am not… I’m glad I’m not a blackbird, a diet of worms (pun!) is most unappealing… mind you, I’m not sure being a human’s that great.

© 2018 robert greig