Poetry Map

We all know poems about Scotland but can the shape and nature of Scotland be drawn entirely in poetry? StAnza has set itself the challenge to see if this is the case. Find out more about the project and how to submit your poem by clicking here, or browse the poems using the map. Latest poems are listed below.

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 391

Monday 29 March 2021, 17:29

The Dweller and the Guest

There is no wildlife here, he says.
It is a barren landscape.
A word he has carried
from a distant classroom
along with crevasse,
moraine, erratic.

I turn to the mountains
with a stranger’s eyes,
beseeching a display.
But the cloud is moody, low and grey.
Our beloved Cairngorms
are not on form today.

Are the ptarmigan shy among the rocks?
Have the snow hare melded into moss?
The song of the ring ouzel,
conspicuous in silence.
No snow bunting, no dotterel,
no lime-spattered lichen.

My guest takes pity on me.
We have deer on our city lawns,
he confides. Rabbits, foxes,
badgers, voles. Then he goes
in search of carrot cake
and bacon rolls.

Alone now with the chairlift.
Dormant towers looming
from the mist. The snow plough,
fences, discarded wire. Somehow,
this abandoned playground
had made of me a liar.

But then the Shelter Stone leaned
a roar into the deep of A’an,
where shadows of Macdui rose
to take the soul and shape
of one grey man. And when
the Coires’ shoulders shook
alive, an angry avalanche
of rock came vaulting down.
I called back my guest. Too late.
He had already left for town.

Karen Hodgson Pryce

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 390

Thursday 25 March 2021, 16:54

Loch Ordie

She is whirls, of
argent and raven,
she is pools of
unbroken eternity,

where jagged pike,
honed abyssal             arrows,
consume
blank space.
Here is
Stygian subterfuge, an
onyx underworld, as

midnight anglers (from another world)
attempt to pierce the
primeval meniscus. It is
their calling
from the cave.

O, She is Female!, moulding
herself into lichened glacial
granite,
and insisting upon the
inundation of the
aisles- intellectual
inside this Man-poet.
      Liquid,
she is, but deceptive: Muse-elemental.

October moon, lighted within by
blushing Tranquility, illuminates
tiny tragedies below, as forces
erupt,
snagging on lines the necks of men,
dragged, snagged, under, as

pike gallop
across seething surfaces,
in their flight across
millennia,
pursued,
harrowed by ancient fear,
reaching far beyond
articulation.

Garry Stanton

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map *Global for #StAnza21*: poem no. 389

Wednesday 24 March 2021, 18:19

Waking Up in San Francisco

Dawn cracks open morning,
streaks peach over night’s fading navy.
Out of the half-light, the Nightingale House
looms, gothic and ghostly.  No-one knows
what lies behind the closed blinds.

On the street below a lone car
prowls over unseen speed pillows
dips towards downtown.
Headlights stalk shadows
along apartment walls.

Far above the horizon,
the sky pales to washed-out denim.
Tree-lined hilltops
promise forest trails
among Giant Redwoods.

In the distance, the city stirs.
Trams rattle down Market Street,
tinny bells echoing in the crisp air.
The sun hesitates behind clouds
before a sudden downpour.

Angela Blacklock-Brown

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map *Global for #StAnza21*: poem no. 388

Tuesday 23 March 2021, 11:47

Grianclach – Sun Stone
Midwinter solstice at Newgrange, Ireland 2020 

Old bones sleep in frost,
waiting for the turn,
the clockwork
tick-tock-tilt of the earth. 

Stone cold sunbathed,
a dagger of light
prying open winter
a precious chink. 

Letting in that sharp edge
of hope, a lilt
swelling the womb. 

Beat of wings
against the heart’s windowpane.
Fleeting breath, a promise,
air and warmth,
voices unfiltered. 

To reach out,
to touch and not draw back
like the beam
tracing the dusty floor. 

Gerry Stewart

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 387

Thursday 18 March 2021, 17:44

Lewis Chessmen

Geama Toiseachaidh

Margaret, the Adroit, weeps
Over the slaughtered Walrus King
and pays homage by spellbinding
her warriors
they put to sea, but flounder
to rest for centuries
on Camas Uig beach
A cow finds them

Geama Meachan

Battles rage
Carved in Norway or Iceland?
British Museum v. Museum of Scotland?
Struggle won by the “Museum of the World”
and lent back to a defeated nation
as “Ambassadors of Scotland”

Geama Deireadh

In a foostie drawer in an Edinburgh home
Beserker is found, wild eyed, biting his shield,
bought for a quid,
sold for a million
sleekit and deceitful
he conceals Check,
threatens a Kingdom
by lying to a Queen

Siobhan Walsh

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map

Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 386

Saturday 13 March 2021, 18:24

St. Abbs and the Wrasse

The day was fine and
there was    joy
he held it aloft for me to see—a Wrasse.
Sun shone through its webbed spikes
a crown on a glaze of reds, reflecting;

The old sandstone cliffs.
Salt corroded harbour bollards.
Roofs of red pantiles.
And a phone box perched sentinel on the path.

He knelt
bowed his head to the sea
and lowered the Wrasse back to be
a jewel beneath the surface.

The day was fine and
the joy three-fold;
his for the catch,
mine for the witness
and the fish—
for the    sea.

Ruth Gilchrist

View our full map of Scotland in Poems as it grows »

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.

Categories: Poetry Map