Tuesday, 24 August 2010


one look over the plunging precepice turns my legs to jelly
we descend the steep path from the limestone pavement
where the flowers and ferns find sanctuary among the grykes
to the valley floor of this green and pleasant land
dry stone walled into minature fields
a group of men peer into several telescopes mounted on tripods
their cyclopean eyes peeled on a rocky ledge
just below the limestone pavement where we stood moments ago
it transpires that this remote eyrie is home to a family of peregrines
and one of them was in residence a couple of hours earlier
i take a peek and am astonished to see an unseen rock climber's backside
picked out in x30 magnification!
but no peregrines
i take a stroll along the babbling brook
which washes clean the rocks and stones
when i glimpse a dark shadow that bisects the rock face
and then is gone
i return to the cyclops men with the glad tidings
and lo and behold
one of them trains his scope upon the larder
where a stripe-breasted bird of prey sits in regal magnificence
as i gaze through the telescope
it seems to be staring straight back at me
its hawk eye fixed unblinking on this human spy

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