Tuesday 20 June 2023

Night Jar



Nightjar! Oh night jar!
We drank from the shadowy bottle of your light
Glass chink the last alarm call
Of some small bird by the path,
As Nightjar, oh night jar,
Your mothy cloak of
Of wing-clap wander-gloom
Spread over the deeping wood.
Three old friends & a younger person;
From the Queen, whom
They call The Major these days;
Past Medusa’s broken crown
& the Central Oak,
Taking care not to step on glow-worms;
Nightjar, oh night jar,
From out the forest we came!
Out onto the owl & pipit
Haunted common, to hear your
Croaking riffym rhythms!
Gloaming made visible;
Primal, primary, pre-human,
Praeternatural, preyventionally obscure,
A whirling, whirring, whiling for a whist
Among the birches, pines, gorse & heather.
Oh yes,
& the cuckoos were up late too.

A great evening in Sherwood Forest & on Budby Heath with friends, human & other than human. Riffym is a word coined by my friend Leanne Bridgwater which means an improvised rhythm. See her posthumous book, adDictionary, for more of the same. Preyventionally is a word I made up; I think it makes sense. Gratitude to my companions.

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