Who Are You Calling Vermin?
by Pam Ayres
‘Maybe the polluters will purify our streams.
Purify our waterways? In your bloomin’ dreams!
All will be rewilded, all will be renewed,
The country will look lovely,
But we won’t have any food.
Our stocks will be sustainable,
The French will be our friends,
We shall live in harmony, until the bitter end.’
Hidden beyond the bluebell woods and babbling brooks, there is great unrest in our countryside. In this lyrical satire, Pam Ayres highlights the undercurrents simmering beyond the patchwork of fields. We meet the angry fishermen who can’t afford to live in their own villages, the indignant farmers who get the blame for everything and the old man grieving for the unspoilt village of his youth.
The animals have their say too, from the persecuted grey squirrel who didn’t want to leave America anyway, the barn owl mourning his now-converted ancient barn, and the humble maligned mole, all of whom come together and demand to know: Who Are You Calling Vermin?