Alice Daly, Rebecca Patterson, Nicola Ashbrook, Helen Chambers


It was morning all afternoon. On hushed calcadas
pigeons and pickpockets fled to another planet. The dogshit remains,
next to dropped masks and lonely monuments.

I know every inch of this pavement, I’ve walked it that many times.
Yet, with each new excursion, I learn to see
with new eyes.

See trees everyday – co-breathe. Supplement with fluffy sight
of squirrel and backing tape of birdsong. 
Let cold nip your cheeks and sun caress your back.

Listen: the clap of woodpigeon, the purr of sparrow,
honk of night-flying geese. My heart soars
with the soft whoosh of mesmeric starling murmuration.

Alice Daly is an American living in Europe, retired from subsequent careers in television production, anthropology and urban planning.  Music, travel, photography and craft beer fuel her wonder.
Rebecca Patterson is a South African living in London. She is a lover of books, poetry, words, art, nature, and Yorkshire Tea (amongst other things). She is curious about everything.
Nicola Ashbrook is a writer and currently home-schooling mum to two busy boys. She wrote this piece as a prescription for our current times, sitting in her local country park in the north-west of England, enjoying some outdoor writing and much-needed peace half-way through her daily exercise.
Helen Chambers writes in rural NE Essex, UK, where her absorption in watching – and listening to – local birds is helping her through the third lockdown:


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