The puzzle she picks

is missing a piece.

But she cracks the code, 

finds patterns beneath.

That rhythmic contraction, 

the root of the beat. 

The beat of another, 

she resolves to keep. 


Cuculus Canorus

 ‘Sing cuccu, nu, sing cuccu

            Sing cuccu, sing cuccu, nu!’

                                             The Cuckoo Song (Anon, c. 1250)

The host does not see that

Black heart, hidden beneath

Her sleek plumes of blue, grey.


Her cutthroat mimicry,

Fools; pipits, dunnocks and

Warbler too, cuccu, nu.


And that brood parasite

Nestles in, makes her bed.

And seeking to destroy


Lies, with him. Exacting.

So bold in her pretence,

Not a feather ruffled.


She gorges, mouth agape,

Sates the host’s cuckold now.

His new cuckoo, cuccu, nu.