We are driving down David St O’Connor when we see a knot of mynah ‛pest’ birds in our path.
I beep the horn and they fly into the air briefly to let us through.
Then we realise they have been clustered about an inert mynah face-up in the middle of the road.
Has there been a fight? Were they about to dine?
Or like elephants and ourselves, do they recognise the dead?
Twa Corbies (trad.)
AS I was walking all alane
I heard twa corbies makin' a mane:
The tane unto the tither did say,
‛Whar sall we gang and dine the day?
‛— In behint yon auld fail dyke
I wot there lies a new-slain knight;
And naebody kens that he lies there
But his hawk, his hound, and his lady fair.
‛His hound is to the hunting gane,
His hawk to fetch the wild-fowl hame,
His lady’s ta’en anither mate,
So we may mak our dinner sweet.
‛Ye’ll sit on his white hause-bane,
And I’ll pike out his bonny blue e’en:
And wi’ ae lock o’ his gowden hair
We’ll theek our nest when it grows bare.
‛Mony a one for him maks mane,
But nane sall ken whar he is gane:
O’er his white banes, when they are bare
The wind sall blaw for evermair.