I’m going to put up a few fragments of some of my work over the next few months. Here is a poem to start.
I wrote Wolf Winter as part of my MA portfolio, when my tutor Nicola Davies, who writes fantastic books about animals and the natural world, suggested I put myself into the head of an animal and try to see things from its perspective.
My fur is grey against the gleam
Of snowdrifts in a frosted wood
And all the day I burn for food.
I rest and run.
Dusk falls cold on glittering snow.
I dig a hole, I crawl beneath,
I lie there shivering to my teeth.
I warm and sleep.
At dawn I cross a frozen lake.
I sniff the air for scent of food,
Some passed by days ago – no good.
I ache and burn.
I wonder where my brothers are.
Too long without them; different pain.
I seek the sky and howl again.
I prowl and search.
I sniff around the water’s edge
Where reeds have hardened into spikes.
My breath comes trailing spumes of white.
I wait and turn.
The doe is damaged, stumbling, slow.
I smell her long before she knows
Or even sees me, and I close.
I tear and eat.
The evening brings my brothers’ trace.
I scent their passage on the rain,
I tip my head and howl again.
I wait and wait.
I watch the deep violet sky.
A white moon rises. Now the snow
Is smooth and silvered where I go.
I pad and prowl.
Then high upon the mountain trail
Beyond the frozen waterfall,
I hear a distant answering call.
I run and run.
Also published on electrikinc.wordpress.com
* * *
Many wolves live in Alaska, Canada and Asia, some in Yellowstone National Park in
Wolves will eat deer, elk and some smaller animals – birds, snakes, hares, lizards, even fruit
Wolves live in packs of about 6 to 8. Their young are called pups or cubs and are born
blind, deaf and helpless
Some wolves are red but most are grey
Arctic wolves grow a thick white coat in winter
Many scientists want wolves brought back to Scotland. They would eat some of the
deer that strip young trees bare, killing them. More young trees (saplings) mean more places for birds and small mammals to live
These incredible animals are under threat in many places in the world, where hunters kill them – not for food, or for their pelts, but for pleasure. Which is wicked.