Friday, 9 March 2012
Scraps of Skylark song carried on a ragged wind. Lifting the cold iron gate. An overcoat tied up with baler twine. Rainbow puddles in the mud under the diesel tank. Cracked and calloused hands. Scraped knuckles.
Rat holes and poison under the asbestos sheets. Nettles grow up through the wire. Rusty buckets with broken handles. Bent and buckled oil drums full of dirty water. Chickens scratch and cackle and skitter over the muck heap.
Click-click goes the electric fencing around the pig field. Old sows grovel up everything in the trough. Snort and splutter in appreciation. Rough bristles under the hand.
Tools for the job: club hammer, rip saw, crowbar, tin snips, mole grips, WD40 and the big adjustable.
Tractor ruts filled with hardcore. Thistles push up through the cracks in the concrete road. Sparrows feed on the hedgerow berries. Bert's new gate won't shut properly. "Blow me, boy, reckon I wuz thinkin' in metric!"
Hoppers and silos. Grain augers and driers. Dusty cobwebs in every corner. Hessian sacks hung over draughty windows. Noise of motors and machinery.
Bale strings hung from a nail. Bags neatly stacked. An old radio on top of the wall. Crackles into life if you tap it. The shipping forecast. Next to it a calendar from years ago - "Beautiful Britain".
Spent cartridges lie near the spinney. A chain saw sings in the distance. Crows fly over cawing darkly. Time to finish in half an hour. Hundreds of starlings sail across the setting sun. Red sky burns behind the bare trees. Should be another fine day tomorrow.