Kite-Flying on Cullen Beach
I run until the wind plucks at my hopeful handiwork -
Brown paper, string, old cane, held with glue,
And carries it aloft, like Icarus, towards the sun.
My parents huddle, pinched-faced, like refugees, against the rocks -
The Three Kings trudge wearily down the beach,
Towards some promised Bethlehem
Long buried in the sand.
At night, by guttering gaslight's glow, my great-aunt tells me
Tales passed down the long, defeated years -
Of the day the young men left, fresh-faced,
For Culloden, or the Somme, or other Calvary.
And so I run on to catch the wind,
Oblivious in my youthful dreams,
Not grasping yet what Culloden means
Or Gethsemane's night.
Footnote: The Three Kings is the name given to three rocky outcrops on Cullen beach.
For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here
All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.