Blackbirds and the General Election

Despite the pouring rain, the garden has been full of birds today, primarily blackbirds. They are out in force, braving the weather to get the food they need, to keep themselves fit for the future and the cold months ahead.

I hope we are like the blackbirds. I hope we are out in force, making the changes we need so we can remain fit in the future. Fed. Warm. Finishing work before we die. Healthy without being bankrupt. Well educated- or at least with the choice to be.

Let us stretch our wings and brave the weather. It’s going to get cold, so wrap up warm, ask a neighbour for help, help a neighbour if you can, watch out for treacherous pathways and busy traffic; watch out for each other. Let’s get out there as a community and vote.

I won’t tell you who to vote for. I just hope that you can vote with the most vulnerable in mind. The Conservative manifesto promises to cut funding for children with learning disabilities and autism within four years, plus there’s no money in the first year to support parental leave or childcare. Families will suffer. The promises to the NHS are warped and twisted and don’t cover the cuts already made. And if leaving Europe is your main agenda, if it hasn’t happened by now, I struggle to see how the incumbent party can make it happen. To be clear, I don’t want to leave Europe. I believe we are stronger together, building local, national and global communities on a foundation of compassionate and kindness, to each other and the environment around us.

The blackbirds sing noisily, backing up Damh the Bard and his Sons and Daughters of Robin Hood. This song reminds us of our power, that we hold the key to who remains in power.

If you think that we would do nothing, you’ve misunderstood…

I truly hope that today, together, we do something. Make a change. Vote for a cleaner world, a kinder world, a world where more people have opportunities. A world where gender and sexuality and race and religion and ability aren’t used as tools to divide and isolate people.

The blackbird is the gatekeeper of dawn and dusk, the bird of transition. They indicate change, transformation, and liminality. As they sing now, my heart dips then soars and tears fill my eyes as my anxiety batters me but hope flutters ceaselessly. This is a liminal time indeed. May the blackbirds be an omen of change for the better.

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