For the birds

On Ditching Down we found ourselves
‘For the Birds’ – a mystery tour
Part of the Brighton Festival
at midnight, what was more

A trail of lights led up the hill
which we followed to the crest
all adding to the mystery
which put us to the test

And all was really quiet
as we delved into the trees
The darkness all consuming
The moment there to seize

Then gradually the sound of birds
or something up ahead
A whistling and a chirping
it could, I think, be said

What followed was incredible
magnificent and more
as we discovered installations
in the woods upon our tour

Celebrating feathered things
and magical to see
It was truly an experience
to fill our hearts with glee

©Jemverse

For the Birds‘ – a meditative and immersive journey through a secret South Downs woodland location – took place during the annual Brighton Arts Festival in May 2017.  It was a self-guided journey through a wild landscape at night, transforming woodland and downland with a series of thirty-something bespoke light and sound installations produced by some of the most dynamic sound artists currently working in the UK. It was, without a doubt, the most magical and beautiful experience I’ve had in a very long while. Truly breathtaking.

Photo – ‘Swanee Whistles’ by Kathy Hinde – Jempics

Resplendent

Full of life and joie de vivre
flowers in full bloom
So resplendent in their glory
that we have to give them room
And the wonder overflows here
full of the warm sunshine
that lets us know without a doubt
that it is summertime

©Jemverse

Red III

A little bit of red came
to my driveway where it stayed
and stood alone, magnificent
with beauty there displayed
So gorgeous was its colour
that it brought a little tear
Vivid and resplendent
at this lovely time of year

(And no, I haven’t Photoshopped
the red to beautify
for it really is that vibrant
I am pleased to clarify)

©Jemverse

Photo – poppy – Jempics

Devotion

Up upon the Sussex hills
on Friday afternoon
I spied a sheep with new born lamb
the timing, opportune

As in my hand I happened
to have a camera with a zoom
allowing me to get in close
and for a moment be attune

It didn’t last for very long
as fleetingly and soon
the pair walked off together
devotion there bestrewn

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics

Like snow

Up here at thirty thousand feet
the clouds look just like snow
and I can see for miles and miles
when looking down below

We’re high above mid-England’s green
and the sky is tinged with blue
The sun is out there somewhere
but it’s not within my view

And I’m content to sit and watch
as we continue on our flight
For this really is a special treat
and the view’s a lovely sight

©Jemverse

Photo – mid-flight from Glasgow to Gatwick – Jempics

The Princes Square Peacock

The Princes Square peacock
in full Art Nouveau
looks down from on high
to the people below

And Buchanan Street shoppers
as they venture within
can gaze up to its wonder
with a smile or a grin

For it simply commands
with its wonderful form
that looking up with a smile
is completely the norm

©Jemverse

Princes Square is a shopping centre on Buchanan Street in central Glasgow, Scotland. It was first designed and built in the 1840s by John Baird and other architects, but was re-developed in 1986 to a design by Edinburgh architects, the Hugh Martin Partnership. The decorative peacock was added in 1990 as a contribution to the City of Culture Festival in Glasgow that year.

Photo – Jempics

The Shilling

I remember when I was a lad
how much a shilling gave
were I to spend it, even though
I was encouraged then to save

And so it was in West George Street
in Glasgow, Sunday night
The Shilling Brewing Co I found
built on an old bank site

And though it cost a little more
the beer there that I had
gave memory of the pleasure felt
with a shilling as a lad

©Jemverse

The Shilling Brewing Co was founded in 2016 and occupies the premises of a former Royal Bank of Scotland site. The old bank vault doors remain in the basement when the ladies and gents toilets are now.

A shilling was a unit of English currency before decimalisation in 1968. It was worth 12 old pennies or around 5 pence in today’s money. Back in the day you could get a lot with a shilling; but nowadays you can get virtually nothing with a 5 pence piece!

Photo – a pint of Joker IPA – Jempics

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