Helen Moore

Hedge Fund

Little lines of sporting wood run wild

where hands heaved stones

to enclose – drove John Clare crazy.

Today those walls left to crumble –

cracking bark, and Hawthorn

boughs once plashed,

now ancient elbows’ fold

and sinew; Hazel, Ash –

all create a delicate asylum.

Money markets usually lie

at the core of the financial

system, functioning quietly

Colonies of Snails,

feathers, crush of brittle

lime – a Song Thrush

sings up its midden.

Startled mouths –

White Dead Nettle flowers

open where a shot Fox

crept to die; here lies

minus an eye.


rubbing its feet a Fly – tip,

the yawn of a fridge;

Autumn leaves, debris

rots, spawns Hips and Haws

to feed the Songbirds and Badgers.

and so efficiently that they’re

barely noticed. Like the human

heart, which beats continuously

A few bushes on,

the Elm where a Barn Owl

stared, burped its pellet –

grey ossuary of Mice,


Still, Life finds its niches.

On rocks Lichens crottle,

and warty Elder stems

ooze with tar-black berries.

Below – cutting corners of tins,

and soft, ambulant Toads.

without conscious thought,

their global operation takes

place night and day, while

Gusts, tendrils – the scarlet fruit

of Woodbine flowers,

which lured Moths

on warm, moonlit evenings.

Glossy black plastic

stripped from silage;

Pheasants, beaters,


shots, Retrievers;

coats hooked with Burdock;

shocks of electric wire.

a seizure of the market is like

a cardiac arrest, threatening

the orderly rhythm of the system

Dog Rose – thorns

like bloody fangs;

memories of blooms

that tea-cup Butterflies in June.

Cocoons, gossamer-stretch

between stems;

new risings of Ivy up old posts;

a Wren’s nest tight as a child’s fist;

Spindle, Holly;

and snagged on Bramble,

these newspaper flags.

on which the modern world

has come to depend. Now

it seems it’s on life support –

Switch mechanical,

stink-horn diesel,

the implacable wheels and reach

of a tractor’s machete.  Random execution,

the insane-making crunch,

while the contractor sits

muffled in his cab,

on the wheel his hands

stiff as supermarket quotas…

share values in free-fall,

as investors predict their own

dwindling margins and returns.

Helen Moore © 2011

previously published in The Wolf

capitalism, a Sonnet

chemical Macaque glaxosmithkline

roche   trepanned-brain Baboon

max factor eyes burning Cat   l’oreal

Rabbit   (the devil wears perfume)

o, dear easyjet       ryanair

melting Reindeer, Polar Bear

but a bargain for mcdonalds –

Earth’s rainforests  slashed

as Asians sweat for adidas

nike the evil empire’s goddess

o, bless all ecocidal patriarchs – so smart

in suits armani uniforms

a cocktail of intellect and greed

hellish stuff they puppet us to need

Helen Moore © 2011