Be fruitful and multiply
That’s the natural thing tae dae
But it’s hard fan empty, disused land
Is a’ that people see –
‘A block of flats is needed there’
‘A Beefeater or two’
An the seemin’ empty barren land
Becomes a thing that once we knew.
If I could but show tae ye
The life in one square foot,
The variety o’ plants that grow
An sae easily tak root –
Far ever they are given room
An freedom far tae grow –
A world o’ life an colour that
Maist people never know.
Have you ever seen the cities, streets
O’ the insects a’ aroon?
The leaves they are maternity wards,
O’ eggs, larvae, cocoons,
This hidden life we never see
Though the birds and beasties do.
For this their staple diet,
Alang wi’ seed and flower heads too
Hiv ye thocht aboot far yer veg comes fae?
And fa maks yer fruit sae fine?
Weel the birds an’ beasties tak the credit
They fertilise a’ the time
As they fly or move fae floor tae floor
They’re pollinatin’ a’ the wye
For centuries they’ve fermed wi’ sense
Wi’oot kennin the reason why!
O Aiberdeen sae clean, sae green
A wild field is out –
So the bulldozers are welcomed in
For the creatures it’s a rout.
The rabbits they evacuate an’ tak refuge in the park –
But their status it has changed frae wildlife –
Doon tae the pest mark.
Ye may be tired o’ hearin me,
But one mair thing I’ll say
Clean an’ green in a place
Can mean sterile in every wye,
A city wi’ a few trees left
But no wild land nearby,
Is indeed an empty barren place
For the wildlife have had tae die.
Grace Banks © 2000