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In the Polytunnel

David Hale

Roused from reading

Homage to Catalonia

by a flash of feathers in through the door,


I glimpse a sparrow-hawk

ricocheting around its walls,

missing tomatoes plants,

the cucumber frame,


crashing into a stanchion,

rebounding in panic, causing me to duck,

wary of its hooked beak

and razor-sharp claws.


And as I do, it sees the light

as Orwell did during his time

on the Aragon front,


its barred wings and yellow eyes

arrowing out into the bruised heat

of the late summer day.

Born in Scotland, David Hale lives in Gloucestershire. After pamphlets from Happenstance and Templar, his first collection Dancing under a Bloodless Moon was published by Eyewear in December 2020. He is a carer, gardener and teaches English to refugees and asylum seekers.

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