Most of us are familiar with the murmurations of starlings. The flocking displays of hundreds, sometimes thousands, of these birds produce wonderful moving shapes in the air. These murmurations usually take place at dusk in the early winter months and people are drawn to watch their display. It just got me thinking…
image “Starlings Roosting, Marazion” by Tony Armstrong check out his other photos at http://www.tonyarmstrongphotography.co.uk/
image “Starlings Roosting, Marazion” by Tony Armstrong
check out his other photos at
http://www.tonyarmstrongphotography.co.uk/

MURMURATION (Marazion Marsh)

O.M.G! I’m in the M.M.E!

I just want to shout out in the street,

“We’re the best this side of the Tamar!

We’re the Marazion Marsh Elite!”

My name is Clarice and I’m a star

Lingering long and light in the air.

One among legion stood in the wings

As we wait for our grand premiere.

Murmuration…murmuration

Languid like liquid pro quo

Murmuration…murmuration

Balletic nature on show.

I was spotted out at Crows-an-wra

By impresario Josef S.

He hoped to take me under his wing;

How could I say anything but…‘Yes!’

He asked me how much I wanted it;

All the glam…the glitz…and the glory.

“It’s all hard work – no gain without pain

And we’ll need a good hard luck story”

Murmuration…murmuration

When someone asks you to dance

Murmuration…murmuration

Why would you pass up the chance?

Me? I just want my kids to be proud.

“Mum’s got talent!” I want them to say.

Maybe my man will then understand

That I’m not just an eggs factory.

And Nan has never been quite the same

Since her brush with a cat in a bush

Which has left her blind in her right eye

And strangely susceptible to thrush.

Murmuration…murmuration

She’ll give it the best she can

Murmuration…murmuration

She’s doing it for her Nan.

As we assemble in the reed beds;

Everyone’s energized from the start.

A kindred spirit communion;

Each of us yearning to play their part.

Twitching, switching synapses and nerves;

Making contacts; seeing hopes spiral.

A green room of chattering starlets;

A twitterfeed set to go viral.

Murmuration…murmuration

A linked-in printed circuit

Murmuration…murmuration

Now get out there and work it!

And then up in the air as we must

Jockey and jostle for position.

A child’s first drawing transforms into

The fluid of inked-in precision.

Each eager eye’s locked on the next one;

Elastic ease of aerial grace.

Watch as we constellate through the sky;

Starlings starring in spirograph space.

Murmuration…murmuration

Despite the cold and the damp

Murmuration…murmuration

An avian lava lamp.

Amused by the efforts of others

Who mimic our grand exaltations.

Jackdaws, pigeons would labour in vain;

We’d laugh at their fail imitations.

But doesn’t pride come before a fall

And like Icarus I flew too high.

A point that was not lost upon one

Josef S and his discerning eye.

Murmuration…murmuration

Her fifteen minutes of fame

Murmuration…murmuration

She’s edited from the game.

But all that happened a year ago

Since Josef S announced his purges.

And coming down is the hardest thing

When quelling those star-stricken urges.

Why d’you have to put stars in my eyes

Is the bumper birdseed bag question?

I’d do it again in a wing beat;

If somebody made the suggestion.

Murmuration…murmuration

Perpetual emotion

Murmuration…murmuration

For each drop in the ocean.

Like a tax-evading accountant

“We’re making the numbers up, darling.”

It is time to be that wise old owl

Instead of just another starling.

Like those dancers in North Korea;

We’re filled with the joy of perfection.

When everyone is just the same

Then who has the need for reflection?

Murmuration…murmuration

If you occupy the mass

Murmuration…murmuration

It stops whispers in the grass.

Murmuration…murmuration

How best to put it in words?

Murmuration…murmuration

It’s Strictly…for the birds.

© gray lightfoot

Hear Gray read the poem…

A video of starling murmuration and roosting at Marazion Marsh (Long Rock)

And for a sense of how excited the starlings get pre-performance; check out this video…

JUST JACK – STARZ IN THEIR EYES