On Saddleworth Moor,

It’s different up there now.

I’ve seen them twice, by the roadside,

That narrow ribbon before

Z-bending down from the height;

Two kestrels hovering over the scrub

As if tethered by plumblines,

Motionless and from another time almost.

But there’s no gloved hand

Waiting to call them back on trailing jesses.

They are completely wild and living where

We might see sheep when driving by,

But it was blank canvas for such free nature

To a passenger’s eye.

Now they have reclaimed their place,

Waiting with that ageless stealth

For some small prey to stray just near enough.




                                                    By Ruth Enright