when we appear at the gate

their bleating starts

calling of ewes to lambs

lambs to ewes

locating each other in panicked calls

so anxious are they at our arrival


a pair of sturdy lambs burrow under a ewe

knocking the flighty beast off-balance

pull hard at her teats for comfort

lambs who already feed happily on grass

who merrily join patrols of this pasture

party to a gambolling gang

who normally ignore the stark-shorn ewes

lined by tines of electric shears

that have scored their skinned fleece pink


When our red quad-bike appears

these adolescent lambs cry

for more mother’s milk

perhaps instinctively aware

of what drives our human kindness


CLP 27/06/2021

On Sleep

I lost count of sheep

couldn’t quantify cattle

quietly slipped off


CLP 20/06/2021

On Dreams xiv

to activate dreams

start by counting cows then sheep

then feed fresh born lambs

n.b. I have skipped ‘On Dreams xiii’ for now.


CLP 19/05/2021

On August X

Ewe calls to her lambs

Not feeding anymore but

These are still her young


n.b. With lambs weaned after four months, or so, the bonds between ewe and offspring are still strong. When the flock is disturbed by a passing walker pausing and taking in the view at the gate, the baa-ing begins between ewes and lambs; they have recognisable voices. I am sure there must be shepherds who learn who is who in their flock from the individual calls.


CLP 21/08/2019