Sparrowhawks have yellow feet,
The Woodpigeon’s are pink,
And one can take the other down
Quicker than it can think.
The Hawk sat under my apple tree,
Staining the white snow red,
Spreading a grey down carpet
Where her hungry beak had fed.
The Blackbird’s bill is golden,
The Dunnock's legs are red;
Their colour coded miracles
Fill winter’s empty head
With stab and thrill and beat- boxing
With dip and dodge and dance,
With scolding or with shyness,
And the seizure of each chance.
The Fieldfare, foreign-feathered,
Comes to peck the apple core,
While the Goldcrest and the Bullfinch
Show the shades that God once saw
When He finished the creation,
And stood back, enjoying all
Just the way that He’d intended
From the colour to the call.
He didn’t forget the sparrow,
Totting up its plumage count,
And remarking how the chocolate
And the coffee barbs stood out;
How the chirrup and the chatter
Sang a twitter feed of worth
From the vacuum close of chaos
To the spark that lit the earth.
JB 12th Jan 2010