hear me: high-pitched cry I am birth I am light I am sky unbounded my very feathers speak force, power I see you weighted to Earth tethered to creature after creature slow, slowing with fade and flinch a paltry ache of passing days you are open-mouthed soil-bound and I see you seeing me hearing my cry I will permit this: I accept your wonder do you envy my wide wings my hard grace my tender, slaughtering heart? do you long to rise, rise sky-bound untethered at last? do you long for no boundaried heart no boundaried life? let us pity each other you do not know my invisible borders written in air, woodland I do not know how you can bear to be tethered so. five hundred and forty three years it is the five hundred and forty second spring of this oak bud and branch root, shoot leaf and mossy bark and I think about an acorn falling five hundred and forty three years ago and I wonder how half a millennia later I stand beneath the weight and heft of an acorn's descent Kingfisher I looked for the kingfisher and found a lark I booked for a pimpernel and found plantain I looked for the path and found the unexpected way The unlooked for unhooks me from pendulum-heavy expectations Bio: Vicky Allen’s debut poetry pamphlet is “Broken Things and other tales” (Hedgehog Poetry Press, 2020). She’s been published in print & online in Mslexia, Stravaig, Bonnie’s Crew, Writers Cafe and others, & in anthologies by Proost, Black Agnes Press & Dove Tales. She is a 2020 Pushcart Prize nominee. She lives on the south east coast of Scotland.