Poetry Map of Scotland, poem no. 244: Castlebay, Barra

'It doesn’t get dark; it gets blue’
(with thanks to a Barra man)
 
‘It doesn’t get dark; it gets blue’
Inked in darkness
To hold the summer night
Fast for these quick days
 
It doesn’t get dark; it gets sound-light
With the curlews keening
For sleep away from
Shivery bright-dawns
 
It doesn’t get dark; it gets restless
With the absence of spirits
In the haze glare of mid-night,
Hiding behind shadow-fall
 
It doesn’t get dark; it gets sommer-licht
On days when stillness holds
Insects to skin and grass
Tastes sugar rich
 
So it didn’t get dark; it got blue
Soon it pulled back,
The hours of colour carrying us through
Muffled dubh-dark nights.
 
 
Susan Elsley

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