Tag Archives Hitchcock


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A couple of weeks into the Great Lockdown –

robins nesting in the ivy, wild bees

in the eaves, as usual – we were

visited one day by a carrion crow,

its feathers of a blackness beyond

perfection, clinkered armour buffed bright.

It landed, the size of a large cat,

on our modest bird bath beside the lilies

beginning to burgeon. In its beak

was a portion-sized piece of baguette

or ciabatta, which it dropped in the water,

then flew off. At intervals it returned,

snacked on the softening bread, and left.


For a week and more it had the same routine

each day – and then never appeared again.

Maybe its local supply of hard, stale crusts

closed down – or it discovered a bakery

careless with fresh products. Its curious

visits, though fascinating, held a threat.

What if it’s ‘caw, caw’ were merely cover,

and, when it rejoined its muster, it said,

‘Comrades, here’s an end to waiting for the crumbs!’

or, alternatively, ‘Colleagues, regarding

the dry bread problem, I have a proposal…’?

I imagined an Hitchcockian horde

darkening our skies, murdering paradise.






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