Wednesday, 13 August 2014


The second or maybe even third hatchings are taking place. The hedges and dark corners are alive with scruffy squawks. The older rooks play dodge and twist on the field followed by their insistent clamouring young. Our runner beans are regularly plundered and the garden now blooms with spinning, scratched CDs and ragged carrier bags that play upon the wind like corporate prayer flags. Everywhere is enthused with the untidy energy of youth...

And now here they come in a small gaggle down main street. A little knot of girls singing and shrieking; daring the world to look at them with that eggshell-thin, fragile, belligerence of adolescence. Dressed in little more than their fathers' high blood pressure they trip the kerb to Oxhill Road and the sky is filled again with shrill laughter and bad language. Every shriek, every movement, calls fearfully out to an uncomprehending world in which they have found themselves flung. There are no easy Edens for us sons and daughters of Adam.

          "I AM HERE. AND THIS IS ME..." They say.

They fall silent as they walk past and then collapse in snorts and giggles, their arms around each other's shoulders and necks. And I love them for it; I love them for their heroic "barbaric yawp" that signals their presence in this world... in this village... on this little inconsequential street on one summer's afternoon at the razored edge of their childhoods... I'm drawn into their terrifying, wonderful, invigorating, intimidatingly indifferent worlds.

Do the little, feathered scruff-balls that dart beneath the garden hedges also feel this? Lifting their voice to the blank, unyielding sky for the first time. Is their piping call clear and sound? Or do they fear that no one will notice; that their voice is too cracked, that their song won't work? Do they fear that they too might be ultimately... unlovable?

They turn the corner, by the maple that flames wine-red in autumn and pass out of sight.
But their voices still ring among the flights of lazy bees.


...and if there is a slight shake and hesitation over the last word that turns it more into a question than a statement, let us pretend not to notice it.
         ...For yes you are so very, very very beautiful...
                      but for none of the reasons you think...


  1. Words cannot describe how much I love this post. Beautiful!

    1. Thank you Mandy. I think we have all been there and sometimes, to our surprise, find ourselves right back there too...
      Growing up is not linear, is it? :)

    2. growing up is definitely not linear and I currently, I find myself coming full-circle, only I am unable to 'visit' the parts of my youth that are beckoning me, in a real an tangible way. Thus, my memories and imagination must be resilient in providing me with hope on this journey we call life.

    3. That is so interesting Kelly. I think I know what you mean. There is a strange interconnectedness and yet disjunction with our past. I like your connection between memory and imagination. There are times when it is difficult to distinguish the two; one bleeds with the other and perhaps that is a clue. We are oriented to the future but constructed from the past. The two seem somehow indelibly linked, don't they?

  2. I really enjoyed this...makes me want to see those little feathered friends!

    1. There is something inherently and wonderfully exhilarating and mischievous about youth no matter what species - it is such a shame that we (in this country at least) are teaching ourselves to fear it.

  3. They turn the corner, by the maple that flames wine-red in autumn and pass out of sight.

    wow, I would love to walk beneath the maple that flames wine red in autumn....I loved this is lyrical, enchanting.

    they will never be ultimately unlovable, they are full of innocence always unlike us......glad to see your post Sir, after a long happy to wait for your posts...we know u will come up with something extraordinary...

    1. You are right Athira, they will never be ultimately unlovable, but it is often one of the hardest lessons for us to truly learn. :)


For your voice is important... and words that are shared grow wings.