By Josie Whitehead

That Thieving Magpie - Heading Main Poetry Index Bird Index A Chitter a Chatter The Charismatic Crow King of My Garden

That magpie, strutting round my lawn,

     With sharp and piercing eyes -

With glossy plumage, black and white -

    The small birds all despise.


Inspect those feathers in the sun –

   They’re not just black and white.

See - vivid greens and purple tints,

    And blue that’s shining bright.


His iridescent plumage hides

    His shrewd and artful ways

This scavenger, this predator.

    Views baby birds as prey.


Look at that tail!!  It’s half his length.

    His chattering fills the air

He’s watching out for fledgling young!

    Mothers!  Take good care!


Whilst he impresses human eyes,

     With colour and physique,

The smaller birds know all too well

     That cruel and powerful beak.


We humans scorn his thieving ways,

     And view his life with hate,

Yet, frowning on the life he leads,

     Eat chicken from our plate.


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The Nocturnal Prince