In many ways this poem is a nostalgic investigation of a culture that has been largely lost. The difficulty with pigeon fanciers was the avoidance of cliche and sentimentality.
Pigeon Fanciers is a piece of creative writing. I know no pigeon fanciers and have only cursory interest in the sport. The interest for me in the poem is the culture of a type of man I either imaging or remember from childhood and my time in the north of England, hard working, frequently tired, often highly skilled and frequently desperate for a rest on a Sunday afternoon with the newspaper and with a sporting culture often extending towards fanaticism. It has its origins in a mind map prepared for a different poem based on a study of garage mechanics, still not written but past the conception stage. As a result, this poem is not an end to itself, and in some ways is a first draft of a different poem.
Although this is not a frequent occurrence, poems are sometimes spawned as a result of planning or writing a different poem. Sometimes a poem becomes too cumbersome or internally inconsistent and needs to be split, but that is not the case here. This is not a fragment from a longer work or a poem developed from another either as an edited, expanded or polished version. It is a totally different poem written from the same material, in this case a mind map. One of the benefits of keeping hold of initial, old or redundant material, which I keep in a file known as the “asylum”, is that it is available for reflection and a resource for mining at a later date.
- 1:25000 a dripping tap Advice to a Squonk Amelia Arthur driving his wife home from a shopping trip Cool (Sharks) Crepuscle with Nellie Dining in the Cosmic Cafe Disregarding 12 O 2 Ekphrasis Evolution of the Universe Floaters Floating Frankfurt Bookfair 2012 Hare in a Glacial Sequence Heat and Sound Horse in Winter Incidental Field Notes in a Journal innominate group In the Beginning in the cinema stalls watching In the Workshop of Joseph Language and Place Lazarus and Martha at Tikipunga Falls Le Bar aux Folies-Bergère Manhattan Repentance Marilyn and the Physics of David Deutsch Marilyn poems Matapouri Track My lover is a rainstorm On seeing a newspaper picture of Sir Thomas Bouch Pasifika Queen Mab Pigeon Fanciers Poetry Live Poets Exposed Sealed Tombs Sequences shell SIck Child (Flying) So we all find the shore St Francis and the Birds St Helier Migrates after his Martyrdom Sunday after the Abbatoir The digital enhancement of photographs of Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio The Ghost at the Old Lychgate The Growing Weariness of Light The Tree at the Edge of the World Trees dropping Uncategorized Wavelengths