All morning the sky hasn’t budged despite my search for signs of change

the trees are silent, smudged dove grey

it looks like rain but nothing comes.


It seems I’m the only one alive again, until the jackdaws drop into focus

landing in the spruce, unsettling a cone which might fall forever.

Twelve the last time I counted-


this year’s brood cradled in the chimney, chackling me awake on lighter mornings

but I didn’t mind, it was reassuring to hear life and death outside.

All the half- feathered songbird chicks, born for this.


Now they eye me from thin needled twigs, a slick flick of wing, a sideways wink.

Don’t feed the jackdaws, my husband said, but he’s not here

and my pockets are ripe with fruit and seeds.