Disenchanted Birdsong

“Disenchanted Birdsong”   2nd April 2008

There’s a site next door

An old mill and buildings

It’s been there for years

Vandalised, set fire to, lived in.

We got a letter through the other day

From the Contract Demolition guys

6 weeks and it would all be gone.

On Monday mornings and Friday Evenings

The Site Manager calls by

to switch their “tea hose”

On and off from our outside tap!

(The cats don’t like him and are defending the house inappropriately.)

And on an amazing day off

Before the Bank Holiday Weekend

I sit here, writing all this

With the background noise of

Disenchanted Birdsong.

The monster jaws of the

Orange JCB reek havoc

with the fatigued metal girders

Twisting any life left

into a mangled pile.

The clank and grind emitting

squeaks, groans and shrill

repeated calls that echo around

the once busy working lives of many locals.

There’s not much left to go now.

A few inside walls laid bare before our eyes.

Empty window holes gazing blankly

across the concrete yard.

Large yellow crates house what remaining materials

that can be salvaged, re-used, re-cycled.

The JCB driver has gone home now

and the place seems disturbingly quiet.

All I can hear now is the push-pull mower

from a couple of gardens up;

My partners newspaper billowing in the breeze

Jarred by the 4 o’clock bell across the way,

It’s teatime now for our neighbourhood feathered friends

and they’re emitting a mixed chorus of enchanting evening birdsong.

Copyright Lizzie Ross.