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3 poems by Jane Lovell

Pike Nest

He died just here

surging skywards in belts of riverspray

to land snagged

between unexpected limbs,

his final minutes gusting a leaf storm

- that whipcrack bucking and twisting -

bark rasping his skin.

Now, blind and perished,

jaws snapped wide as if for air,

he hangs.

Small birds venture in, inspect

the airy tomb,

its scattered gallery of light on bone,

lay their young, pulse and flutter

in a nest of grass and hair

upon his shrivel-tongue.

Next spring, we'll find its shredded silks,

seams split, birds flown, mossy contents


onto the riverbank below.


Paths into brush and rock, shocks

of berries in bitter leaves, and there

a form, still warm, and a line of wire

carved into the grain, the panicked hare

kicking away, stopping short

with a snap

and the scuff of bone on rock.


He will not blend with stone,

displays himself resolutely,

buffeted as he is, tousled

and leaf-bombed by gales

of passing traffic,

one glazed eye

in that perfectly-combed brow

oblivious to the broken

terracotta, charcoal,

bone of him

and the spindles of his wings

opening and closing

as if some strange semaphore

could summon the gods

to resurrect him.


Jane Lovell is an award-winning poet whose work focuses on our relationship with the planet and its wildlife. Her latest collection 'This Tilting Earth' is published by Seren. Jane's work has been published in Elementum Journal and she also writes for Photographers Against Wildlife Crime. She is Writer-in-Residence at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve.


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