ten thousand I am bid:
fifteen at the back,
come on now,
this unique lot! You’ll not see this again.
Puffin searches in vain for sandeels.
Swan sickens, poisoned by anglers’ lead.
Gannet, strong, snared in plastic net.
Spring rains fail, sand sweeping over pasture.
Fifteen at the back, twenty five online
Yes, sir, that’s more like it, thirty-five for this trophy
stuffed and so beautifully mounted.
You’ll not see another, not anywhere
– forty at the front –
now who’ll give me the reserve price? Fifty?
Thank you, sir. Going… going…
In secret hideouts, bitterns still boom
Otters gambol and play,
no longer hunted.
White tailed eagle soars.
Sixty thousand I am bid.
Any advance on sixty? For this handsome Great Auk
shot, stuffed and preserved for posterity.
All done at sixty thousand?