❦Clay Coloured❦

Bleak and bland, a bothersome blight.




I was born a squab -
needy, milk-fed, speckled slate.
Tufts of black and yellow
line the nest in which I’d wait.
And you were born a god -
dog-headed, proud and tall.
Will you take me in your arms?
(Swaddled like a girl-child)

Carried ‘cross a stream which
rushes, crushes, takes and harms.
You could be hounded, killed,
flayed and flung across low branches,
your skin spread and strung,
made into leather by a scorching sun.
I would hide in the bushes,
right where you were felled.

The river’s gone dry and barren,
so you let me drink from you.
There’s another- not a dove, but a heron.
Long-legged and grace incarnate,
and she struts, prances and bows
her blue bill (a mockery of birddom).
When you think I’m sleeping,
you watch her like she’s game.

I wish you’d show me your rifle
but I only ever hear it in the night.
Cocked and at attention
as she settles down.
The blowback cracks your shoulder and
I wish I was in her position.
What an honour it would be
to die by your incompetent hand.

Bones are left to blanche
in the heat, on the dried-up riverbed,
in this cracked clay grave.
It’s too hot, I can’t sleep,
so, I sit and wait, right by her head.
One day, you’ll feel hunger again
and if I can have my way,
my body will serve you.