Bluebirds Over

A programme of contrails for Eastbourne,
held over, circled, then the low-flown
aircraft burst through the scuttled wisps of nimbus.

Above the beach of shingle – levelled by pop-up chairs,
and picnic squares, of towels and blankets
(for dads’ brief nap) –

the crowds watch, stiff-necked
by aircraft performing overhead,
deafened by the scream of a Eurofighter.

Mutterings in the afternoon bar
slightly sour the mood,
thick racism in those heat-slowed voices,

and they would rather have Spitfires,
than any recently banked, now gone,
European accord.

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