Fake Whistle

whistle1 - Copy

a boy
from the
railway line

like a real
man’s whistle

there where
the holed
strips were
found in

between the
ties having
fallen from
passed stock

imagine a flat
strip though

bigger and
rusted metal
its powder-dots
as holes

and you
would fold
place between
your lips and

poke in
the tongue

but that
was its sound
not the
growing sores

angular cheilitis
trying to be
like guys

who could
use their mouths
talking big
whistling too


Reading a poem yesterday where the writer reminisces about having wanted to be able to whistle using his fingers [so the real deal] I recalled my inability to do so, but how blowing through a folded strip of metal with holes allowed me to perfectly make the piercing sound of a proper one. This is described in the poem, and I wouldn’t normally illustrate further – literally – but I was intrigued to find that what I produced as a kid is a well-known, if different, homemade construction, an image of this tin-can lid idea heading the poem here. I was further intrigued to discover this is a rudimentary version of an established and professional sheep-dog whistle:

whistle2 - Copy

And just in case readers have no idea what I mean in comparing my metal strip to a cap-gun’s ammunition strip, I am going to provide an image for this too:

cap ammo - Copy

We continue to grow and learn, but I still can’t whistle with my fingers…

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