Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

A rook was at work

by Tom Sutton

I heard a scuttle,
                          looked up:
a rook was at work,
quarrying a face
long barren to man.
His beak-search sent
rocks clattering;
black wing rose,
a welder’s mask,
shielding labourer
from labour’s spoils.
This sheer ground yielded
no grub and,
of my time and motion study,
the rook flew on.
I moved on too.
My lunchtime was over, and
   like the bees picking pollen,
   store-men stacking shelves,
   bacterium in my belly,
   ants in their cells,
   plumbers, programmers, painters
   builders, bankers, bakers,
we all must return,
bound by our labour,
to busy ourselves
once more.

Added: 07.04.2010