THE BIRDS SELL OUT
The raven has turned his intuition into a program.
The seagull lapses into self-parody.
Even the magpie’s ego is outstripped by the hype surrounding him.
The thrush is remarkable only for his curious ability
to remain in the public consciousness.
The nightingale has been phoning it in for years now.
The swallow finally succumbs to sentimentality.
The warbler’s lament is the lament of the jester
who suddenly wants to be taken seriously by the other courtiers.
The rock pipit’s autohagiography is embarrassing
given that nobody you speak to has even heard of him.
I stretch. Today was a cardboard window in a calendar;
a terrified field mouse is somewhere.
Apparatchiks read their fan mail on the green.
LUKE KENNARD is the author of four volumes of poetry and two pamphlets. His second book, The Harbour Beyond the Movie was shortlisted for the Forward Prize in 2007. He lectures at the University of Birmingham and is working on his first novel.