Poetry Map of Scotland, poem no. 154: Inverness


Night-arrival, the suspension bridge lifting
its aircraft lights, then the road veers
to narrow streets precipitous by contrast.

Arrive in a night-rain, the heady air,
then lit-up with drink gaze down
that choke of water to high lights again.

A disco off the main street, pulsing with colour;
and yards away down river steps
a fisherman cast a fly to catch a salmon’s eye.

A bridle of bridges, shower-cap of stores;
a hotch-potch of history. Its account current
in Highland and Devolution politics.

The city packed into luminous acres;
a hand-span in the river’s mouth; the castle
a Court-house kept by Flora MacDonald, and crows.

The sea-laid land lays mapped eastwards, anchored;
its rich earth wealthy with farms, and spilled blood.

Michael Murray

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