Among your things – Anne Eccleshall


I found
stapled together and dated
leaves from those tiny
ring-bound notebooks
you used for shopping.
In columns headed
Common, Occasional,
Rare, Overflying
were robins, goldfinches
blackcaps and red kites
among flocks of garden birds
captured for a moment
in ink-penned lists
one for each year of your
retirement, the names
in your small neat hand
dwindling over time until
the words were so small
and shaky they could
barely speak.
I lifted
a last bright white sheet
but you had flown.


Anne Eccleshall