Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

Bird Play.

by Brigid Simpson

We arrive after dark, and all night I wonder
about the constant noise, like the roar of a train.
At daybreak I look out of my window, and see.

The Gave rushes by, then crashes over a weir.
This river is in full spate now, from the melted snow
and carries debris down from the Pyrenees.

A wagtail sails past on the raging water.
perched on a piece of driftwood,
followed by a second on a small branch.

As they reach the weir they jump off
and fly upstream, each returning shortly
on another makeshift raft.

I watch the two birds for over an hour,
as they repeat the journey again and again,
children revelling in repetitive games.

Each time they seem to keep afloat a little longer,
but just avoid being swept over the edge.
These wagtails enjoy their way of white water rafting.

Added: 30.04.2010