The way it is

When mouse is on the menu for hors d’oevres

The kestrel hovers with a tad more fervour.

He stoops, a taloned, cullinary arrow,

And pudding will be vole with headless sparrow.


Sometimes, sitting in the grass

A spider strays onto my arm.

Alien signals strike alarm

Too many legs, too fat to pass

He tumbles in the tangled hairs

Till, like a god, I tease him out

To freedom. Chastened and devout,

He thanks me in his webtime prayers.

Staying in or not coming out.


    It looks like a cold spring this year,

    So we Sycamores have decided not to risk it.

    I’m sorry – but we must consider our buds.



    May is bound to be wetter than usual,

    And our leaves are just not cut out for heavy rain.

    It would be sheer folly to open out now.



    My! How lucky the Oaks have been;

    Chancing their arms,, and getting away with it.

    What – spring leaves in summer? We’d be a laughing stock.



    Autumn is such a wasteful season,

    And only a nut would turn out in October!

    In any case, one must wrap up for the winter



    The first snows, and a strange numbness.

    The Oaks are murmuring contentedly about leaves,

    But the Sycamores’ feet are killing them.

The Sedge

A sedge is hard to spot.

As likely as not,

You’ll think its grass.

Many simply pass

Them by unseen

Because they’re green.


Small fountains of leaves

Like little sheaves,

Each pendant ear

Can hardly clear

The sward – concealed

In an open field.


Some take it for a reed

Where, willow-treed,

A forest pool,

Covert and cool,

Entices sedges

To its edges.


Not quite like a rush

(Not so much bush

As porcupine)

But more refined,

Less of a spike –

More lady-like.


On undulating dunes

Their curving runes

Wind Indian-file

On hostile soil.

Each roped to each

Abseils the beach.


From where the spring tides surge

To roadside verge;

Bogs and boulders

To hard shoulders;

Wherever veg. is –

You’ll find sedges!


Flea-flowered Bohemian

Star Carnation

Hairy Fingered Dwarf.

You’ve got to laugh –

Such names! They say,

“Don’t call us ‘hay’!”


Herons never rush.

They doze on the wing

And side-slip,

Dreaming of grayling

Where willows dip

In the evening hush.


Herons seldom miss.

Into parallax

And 3-D,

Their rapier attacks

Cleave obliquely –

Plant the deadly kiss.


Herons nest in trees.

Teetering on twigs,

They unfish

For scrawny young sprigs,

Then rise and swish

Lazy on the breeze.


Sun-drenched succulance,

Sensuous voloptulance,

Scented intoxulance,

Sinful indulgulance –


The Bumblebee

A small barrel of buzzes

He fusses round the flowers’ faces

Like a latin barber.


It seems that what he does is

Choose those Dandelions and Daisies

With the best-filled larder.


Then, pollen-filled, he thus is

Ready to return to base – his

Hive in some green arbour.


How similar to us is

Bumble Bee! We too like stasis.

Changing seems much harder.

The Oak

England’s family retainer

Stately, portly and benign

Gnarled and riven old campaigner

Veteran of seasons foul and fine.


In his arms the children clamber

High adventure, daring deeds;

While the Jay in blue and amber

On the acorn harvest feeds.



Buttercups like to be seen.

Try to pass them by

And they’ll cover fifteen fields

Just to catch your eye.