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. 305

Thursday 21 May 2020, 16:42

Bandstand, Nairn

Not strummed, trumpeted
or banged with a drum –
other strains flow from it now
despite the silence.

The bands disappeared,
blown over the firth,
but the bandstand remains,
its form composed
as logos, calendars,
Facebook pages,
watercolour paintings,
and oils;

and they make prints
in limited editions
without end.

Now there’s a tune.

James Andrew

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

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All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland  are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 304

Tuesday 19 May 2020, 11:53

Peace Garden

You sole
obstinate wasp
can you understand it
was your persistence wore me down,
pressed

me to
sacrifice my
sandwiched sustenance.
Your willing spiralling descent
onto

fallen
fat salami
stirs in me disgust but
also guilt in tempting you, for
are not

you a
Samye Ling wasp?
Perhaps once Buddhist or
yet to take such refuge but now
feasting

under
holy stupa,
high flags cracking as I
turn, confused in this garden
of peace.

Mary Wight

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.

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Poetry Map of Scotland: Poem no. 303

Friday 15 May 2020, 16:46

By Ballachulish Bridge

I mind the time, when I was very wee,
A chain-pulled ferry stretched across the kyles,
Medallion-like upon our neck of sea.
The loch-side road meandered many miles
To Kinlochleven – rock and machair grass,
And rain, and ling, below the mountain ridge –
A track so narrow, two cars could not pass.
But then one day they built for us a bridge.

My errant grandson came for lunch today –
He drove from Glasgow city in his car,
Brought wife and kiddies with him all that way
And back again, now distance is no bar.
I mind the time we waited for a bus –
A wooden shelter shared with highland midge
That pestered till the driver stopped for us –
Such were the days before they built a bridge!

Upon the bus’s flank it said “MacBrayne”;
Along the gravelled track it toiled and groaned
To Oban, where we had to board a train,
Snail-slowly, and a southward pilgrim loaned.
These new-built bridges, leaping lochs and braes,
Would seem to span from mountain range to range;
What bridge is there from age to younger days?
There’s none – there’s just the one-way loan of change.

Marie Marshall

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.

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 302

Thursday 14 May 2020, 19:35

Waiting


Kippers catapult me back
to Victorian hotels with huge
rain slashed vistas,
brittle toast and butter knobs,
sugar lumps like granite,
paintings of mouldering birds
on thick wallpaper.

I remember every kipper
but not so much the people,
though they certainly comprised
a bald man in a sports jacket,
decrepit car rusting outside,
and his wife, whose homeland
was hidden, like her,

in sad cloud
beyond the bay windows.
What did we even do
except order kippers
and stare silently at the sea?
I suppose we were waiting always,
for the weather to clear.

Hugh McMillan

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. 301

Wednesday 13 May 2020, 11:41

The Station

The beast arrives stealing the emptiness of the curving station,
hot breath,
rising steam,
wind, whispering secretly,
giving chase
stirring up sleep infused leaves
startled into wakefulness,
abruptly.
Gravity doesn't secure everything.
Discordant,
the quiet lifts bird like wings,
yellowed by the sun
throwing them at its evading form
converging in the dark of dusk
marrying night.
The moon hides behind clouds
gathering again
in a gray collage of the sky
assembling for prayers.
There's poetry in the snarl,
paws revving up the heart,
heat stoked action of the fuel
fingering ice in tunnels,
the slip, slap, slosh
quietly melting inside muscled pistons
ejecting the expired breath
as winter welcomes the beast
in the waiting emptiness of a station.

Shalini Pattabiraman

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 300

Tuesday 12 May 2020, 13:24

The Chimney Sweeper

We pause on our midsummer hike.
This wee black moth offers a shade,
a smudge of soot in the shifting sunlight
beside the Old Military Road.
He rests in shivering grasses
matt charcoal on a shiny stem,
wings fringed with a thin dusting of ash.
And now, quick shimmy of taffeta, he’s off
to perform a delicate strathspey,
his evening dress, like some black-coated Goth,
discordantly elegant on the bleak moor.

Were you dancing then, Chimney Sweeper,
when Caulfeild’s men smashed stones
to build this road, and redcoats marched
to break the Highlands,
or when the bonnie prince rode by
to Inverlaidnan house, that’s now a ruin?
Did they pause on this track, those violent men,
spotting the smoky blackness of your wings,
your small, uncanny shadow on the grass
and, like us, more pensively
continue on their way? 

Sheila Lockhart

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