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Wood Pigeon Rat-a-tat Tat


enthralled I watched

with wonder through

the kitchen window

feet stuck to

the floor transfixed!


wood pigeons

breasted dusty pink

fat fratching scratching pair

of peanut pilfering pugilists

perched opposite ends of wooden trellis

atop back garden fence

battle line drawn

before taking turns

trading rap tap slaps


wings wildly flapping as they

flopped hopped stropped alternately

backwards and forwards

edging closer or edging apart


not the bang boom bonks

or the clank clatter clinks

of cold steel swords

on chainmail links in

medieval free-style combat

or the blood-and-guts of

bare-knuckle boxing


more the silent slapdash

slapstick spat

of a Laurel and Hardy

rat-a-tat tat!



© Rowland Hill

Picture 10137284, illustration by Harrison Weir, 1877, image copyright Mary Evans



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