I met my love in a cotton mill,
Far away from the Atlantic’s blasts.
Together miner and bal-maiden,
We worked to unearth our Cornish pasts.
Drawn to the land of our ancestors;
A hard rock place surrounded by surf.
Retracing steps on cliff path and lane;
Our ears tuned for the call of the chough.
But this elegant crow was missing
(Despite being the national bird);
Had vanished from these sea-sculpted shores.
It’s plangent CIAO!! no more to be heard.
Conspicuous in absentia
On Cornwall’s coat of arms, it conjoins
With the fisherman and the miner
And fifteen bezants or golden coins.
A touchpaper lit on The Lizard,
Now a hundred fireworks blaze the air;
Our Kernow made complete whenever
We chance to witness a tumbling pair.
Anthracite black with red legs and beak
That favours the Gwennap Head daymark
And we discovered them together
Even stroked one at Paradise Park?
They stand for us a symbol of love
Staying together until death’s knell.
Heritage called us back to Cornwall
And the choughs chose to come back as well.
© gray lightfoot