(This poem was long-listed for the Paper Swans Single-poem Competition 2020 judged by Wendy Pratt. See link below to read the competition e-book)
plumply stuffed with rusty feathers
maybe pheasant – did he find them in the wood
as the twigs broke underfoot? Now he sleeps, leafy crisp
and tightly tucked, blanket-weighted, bobbing out of dreams
on a wren song, on a jackdaw, with the buzzards turning circles
but in these pockets, see his conker-shelled treasure.
And a sweet wrapper, rolled shut – was it eaten in the wood
with the pheasants, undercover, an on-task reward
soil-scuffed and savoured? My bronze topped boy
– no one told me you’d been good.
Helicopters, ash or maple? Tightly woven
teasel-headed, how I scrump his silent moments
unpick ruby haws and rose hips
pocked-sized prizes, precious
remnants of a day.