Mark Totterdell’s poems have appeared widely in magazines including Agenda, Envoi, Magma, The Rialto and Stand, and have won competitions. His collections are This Patter of Traces (Oversteps Books, 2014) and Mapping (Indigo Dreams Publishing, 2018).
Though I never employed him
to soundtrack my dreams,
this morning’s early blackbird
is back on his woodwind,
those expert glissandos,
the rises, the trills and chirrs.
And now he’s off on his
police siren impression,
not the modern wails and yelps and phasers
you might think he’d go for,
but the proper old-time two-note
‘nee-naw nee-naw nee-naw’,
as if he’s been watching those cop shows
full of corruptions and easy deaths
from decades before he was even an egg.