National Poetry Day

As it is NPD in the UK I set myself a task to write a ‘quickie’ while sitting in the sun yesterday. Here it is.

It’s National Poetry Day

so today’s the day to put pen to paper

if I can drag myself away from watching

a garden spider wrapping silk around

a hoverfly (I can see it now from my seat

in the sun in the centre of its lair). The victim

looks like a minuscule mummy and the spider’s

drinking the liquidised flesh if I’m not

mistaken (so fit for purpose!).

So what’s on the menu now that’s ended?

More Covid 19 alarm?

more listing the thousands of critters on the Red List?

more stream of consciousness?

more rubbing our noses in the dirt?

more didactic drumbeats?

more alarmist alliteration?

more marvellous metaphors, sardonic similes and canny conceits?

more ironic digs about our country?

more colonial cognitive dissonance?

more climate catastrophe?

more hero’s journey into the dark night?

Well, no;

just a few concrete observations (don’t ask me what;

I don’t know yet) and some showing not telling

as they advise in all the best books.

I told a friend today she could tell north from south

by looking at brambles (even the stench of manure

will tell you which way is south in England’s Green

and Pleasant Land) and that nature’s a better teacher

than all our hardback books and even the thousands

in Dove Cottage. (At the precise moment I told her

I heard a mewing from the sky so we both looked up

and saw seven buzzards circling in the thermals).

That’s strange: the spider’s scarpered with its first

wrapped meal and left a second twitching in its web.

(I’ll check it out after tea)

And, look! a dandelion’s flowered between flagstones;

a giant cumulus humilis cloud’s hugging the house opposite;

a crow caws from a chimney cowl; against the blue

a contrail expands from needle-sharp beginnings

to candy-floss staccato and two black and white carers

cross the street peeling off masks and wiping hands.