Poetry Map of Scotland poem no. 71: Aberfoyle

The Fall of Water

written at the Little Fawn Waterfall, The Duke's Pass, Aberfoyle

The lithe leap the river makes
demands its own vocabulary
as ballet does – technical, evolved, exact -
to match its lacy, poised deliberation:
grand jetée,


sauté de chat.

Rocks heaped in the rift,
frayed and grained by its passage -
a mouthful of teeth, with splintered branches
caught between grinding edges.
Some are weathered like knuckle-bones,
others patted to a fat-buttock roundness,
one a perfect ogee, like the keel of a boat.

In the dapples of the trees a dust-brown moth
abseils down the reveal of sunlight and is lost
among bracken, the stealth of birds
and the sleepy conversation
of water slipping between stones.

Elizabeth Rimmer

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