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last update:

11 Jul21

Alison Lock photo e-mail Alison
Alison Lock website
Alison Lock at Calder Valley Poetry

poetry favourites:
Indigo Dreams Publishing

and in the shop…
collections –
“Revealing the Odour of Earth”
Calder Valley Poetry;
“Beyond Wings”
and “A Slither of Air”,
Indigo Dreams Publishing



             BBC: Between the Ears: Alison Lock reading    Lure (you will need to sign in).


Delayed Murmuration: No Mexican Wave

Last year, before Autumn curled the leaves
or formed a lingering blanket of neutral greys
there came a reminder of days gone by
like a swatch of holiday snaps, impossibly blue.
Already the birds were poised in migratory black, three deep
on the telegraph wires, pole to pole, waiting
for the messenger of mercury, and just
when it was time for the turn of the current on the equinox tide
something happened to change their minds.
Whether it was the unseasonal heat, the unfiltered
dusk or the abundance of sodium streetlight
at a time when we expect undulations of Mexican waves
– we don’t know –
they simply stopped dusting-off their long haul wings.
Perhaps it was the way the sun spilled chilli red, tie-dying
the sky with African marigolds on a hue of Hibiscus.
Whatever: it stopped the starlings from daubing their arrow heads
or splashing their petrol hides across our Northern sky.
Maybe those wires transmitted a secret code, broadcasting
from the churches that carved lyrebirds had escaped
from the misericords. Even the robins ceased their posturing
as they passed olive branches from one beak to another,
while timid sparrows plumped their breasts, the air cooing
with Taj Mahal dove lovers playing peek-a-boo
around the pillars of the town hall, flirting
in the lime scented air as simple songbirds harmonised.
There were no swan songs.

Alison Lock

in collection Beyond Wings, 2015, Indigo Dreams Publishing,
ISBN 978-1-909357-83-9;
first published in Off the Coast, Winter 2013