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Early morning 7 am,




From next-door neighbour’s alder tree,

Airily, bouncily,


Goldfinch –

Head striped black, red and white;

Wings black with broad bar

Yellow bright –

Followed by a second

And a third,

Beaks steeled to pinpoint, pilfer, pinch,

Patiently sown seeds

From flower bed

Newly stripped of weeds.


As bold as brass,

Heads high; shoulders back,

Strutting their stuff,

Royal Logistics Corps-like,

Probing here,

Prodding there,

With military precision,

Before reaching a decision,

To search for seeds




© Rowland Hill

Picture 10493020, illustration by Winifred Marie Louise Austen, image copyright Mary Evans / Medici



Rowland Hill is a retired charity accountant. For many years he has written lyrical verse to celebrate birthdays, weddings, etc of family, colleagues and friends. Occasionally he has attempted to write more serious poetry, much more so since he began attending “Poetry with Friends” events run by Gail Curry and Elaine Cusack, and the Happy Planet Creative Arts of which they are Directors. He is very interested in the works of Ted Hughes. Recently published items can be found at