Brent Geese Migration

in Poetry

Brent Geese Migration by Roshi Nasehi

Bio: Roshi Nasehi is a musician with a strong track record in performing, composing, public art and social intervention projects. Commissions include Radio 3’s The Verb, the Southbank and a British Council sound art commission in Kuwait in 2014. Her records have received significant airplay and widespread critical acclaim including twice record of the month in Mixmag who described her as “one of the most singular voices working at the moment”

Brent Geese Migration

Leaving the vast whiteness in which you begin
the uninhabited Siberian miles,
treeless and desolate,
pushing you away at sunset.

Brave waterbird once classed as a fish,
now well out of water but
amber-listed.
O branta bernicla,
the ease with which you migrate
a reminder of how you pre-date us.
We are only small.
We are only human.
Our grey-goosed tight skeins,
our mean borders render us
flightless and helpless.

We envy your colour,
the spectacle of your loose flock,
traces of your ancient history born on your grey-brown backs.
Your collective whirr competes with the clang of masts
from the ships in the Essex harbour.

The estuary town awaits you
offering saltmarsh, sea lettuce, and eel-grass.
Your black faces and belies are beautiful,
colouring us in.

Editor’s Note: Roshi’s poem is the first in an occasional series of lyricists among poets as part of Poetry Expo. Brent Geese Migration was commissioned by Leigh Folk Festival as part of the Estuary Song Writing Project

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