Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Air Mines


(A flock of swans flew into power lines in January 2003 on the Isle of Thanet. Most were electrocuted or fell to the ground and died of their wounds)

no one gets a medal for this
except perhaps the red badge of

I saw her last Sunday
lazy on a slim stream where warblers make
song in reeds
maybe among the slaughtered who

and later died from wounds
were three who skimmed
my head as i tramped over marshes
i heard their rich vibrato
i knew them personally.

i make light, trivialise, tell myself
they're merely big white ducks
with crooked necks, and lucky
on account of an arbitary accident of
extreme beauty
not to compete with turkeys at christmas

no importance compared to the war in iraq
less newsworthy than kate winslett's diet

a flock of swan needlessly massacred
for want of a few markers
on power lines
over a kent field
in winter

(Janet Cameron from Logos 9, Spring 2004 & Equinox 9, March 2004. Highly commended in The Lady Longford Poetry Competition 2004)

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