Guest Poem by Patrick Osada

Patrick Osada’s work has been broadcast on national and local radio and widely published in magazines, anthologies and on the internet. His first collection, Close to the Edge was published in 1996 and won the Rosemary Arthur Award for Best First Collection. In total he has published seven collections, From The Family Album, his most recent, was launched in October 2020. He recently retired after ten years on SOUTH Poetry Magazine’s Management Team and as the Magazine’s Reviews Editor.


Each evening they appear at dusk
in ones and twos –
return from distant foraging.
Flapping untidy wings in laboured flight,
they circle,
gathering as a cawing group,
heading for their roost in Hazelwood.

Today, nest building in the tallest trees
that screen the wood.
Feathers, flickering with a purple sheen,
birds stalk through the plough
gathering stems of autumn straw,
twigs snapped from skeleton hedge –
their cries lost to a bitter wind.

Toing and froing, this noisy congregation
battles swift gusts,
land unsteadily in topmost branches.
Slowly, under a cold March sun,
old architecture is refreshed,
new nests built –
airy cradles to rock this Springtime’s young.