She sits on the wooden garden bench, it is 6am in Winter, Spring is around the corner and the birds are in full song. The dawn chorus floods the air. Trilling twitters and peaking cheeps, who are these birds? What make are they? She has looked them up on the Internet, keen to identify them by their call, but if you don’t know birds, and she knows only a few, like the robin and blackbird, then it is difficult to identify them by the sound they make because one has no starting point. Trrrrrrr it, trrrrrrr it, toodle oodle, toodle oodle, brrrrr, brrrrr – is that last one cold? The fat woodpigeon is not awake yet, lazy sod, his unmistakeable call is not here and is noted for its absence.
She sits on the wooden garden bench, it is dry for a while, then a few splats of water arrive on her notepad blurring the writing, now it looks like tlllllll lt, trrlllll it, taadle aadle, taadle addle, blllll, blllll, and they might describe the sounds and they might not. Still they call. Who do they call to? Mild today. Rain has stopped. Birds keep calling. She has a crick in her neck from holding the phone between chin and shoulder, must stop doing that she tells herself daily.
No wind in the trees, no cloud in the purple sky, lilac light coming from the east and filtering through the still leafless trees. The shed silhouette is black; the apple tree guards it with the birds in the branches trilling for victory. Or something.
Polly Robinson © 2012