John Clare (13 July 1793 – 20 May 1864 / Northamptonshire / England)
The Firetail's Nest
'Tweet' pipes the robin as the cat creeps by
Her nestling young that in the elderns lie,
And then the bluecap tootles in its glee,
Picking the flies from orchard apple tree,
And 'pink' the chaffinch cries its well-known strain,
Urging its kind to utter 'pink' again,
While in a quiet mood hedgesparrows try
An inward stir of shadowed melody.
Around the rotten tree the firetail mourns
As the old hedger to his toil returns,
Chopping the grain to stop the gap close by
The hole where her blue eggs in safety lie.
Of everything that stirs she dreameth wrong
And pipes her 'tweet tut' fears the whole day long.
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