Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 355

Vikings in Uig Bay

Carved Queen,
do you contemplate
this King’s demise,
like the culled Hebrideans?
Your porous hand caressing a chased cheek,
as artisan horses flank your position –
he pushes you into the open.
Finger pinched towers silhouette against
the gannet laden sky, defending
a Nordic horde.
His Berserkers bite
the tops of cuneate shields,
ordered to drown in lust and ash;
coming on the Bay tide.
From the white sands,
the pagan bishop’s sermon stains
perennial grass in the name of Tyr.
Another indigenous line desecrated
on a chequered sea, where
the longship sailed.

Robert Nesbitt

Author’s Note: The poem relates to the Lewis Chess Pieces, Uig Bay, Isle of Lewis, and linking us to the Vikings. 

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