Poetry and Pictures from the Yorkshire Dales by Alan Hartley

dales poetry headerPhotograph ©David Tarn


wasp.jpgMichael HartleyRelaxing in the window seat,
Content, enjoying morning sun,
I find I have a new companion
Who just appears out of the air
To fix me with a basilisk stare,
Intended to intimidate.
He strikes a streetwise hard-man pose
(No gentleman would ever wear
Those black and yellow stripy clothes)
We have potential conflict here.

But why does he disturb me so?
I find it difficult to say.
I look into obsidian eyes
And see no hint of reason there.
I sense a brain that works another way,
That knows no fear, no pity, no remorse,
Only pre-programmed stimulus-response.
An armoury that our Creator planned
To counter man's intelligence
With weapons men would never understand.

And yet we have a common bond,
Inherited from ancestors
That crawled upon this Earth in aeons past:
Our mutual love of warmth and idleness.
Was it our search for these that cast
Us into conflict long ago,
When chance mutation in a nucleus
Began our anatomical divide?
Right now, watching you preening on the glass,
I just thank God you're on the other side!