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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 409

Thursday 15 July 2021, 12:29

As seen from Cannon Hill

Cannon Hill affords a panoramic view
Fields of green with sky and sea of blue
Rooftops clad in many coloured slate
Clouds all billowing t'wards their fate
The castle, built of sandy stone
Perhaps once a king sat on his throne
Great trees in various states of dress
Gently swaying to the wind's caress
Woolly sheep eat in huddled flocks
As the Arran ferry leaves the docks
Sunny Saltcoats shines like a new pin
In silence far from the madding din
A tiny winged and multicoloured moth
Heads for the turbines out to the north
Then, the wondrous sight of Irvine Bay
Shimmering at the very close of day
This and more as seen from Cannon Hill
Amazed me once and does so still.

Angus Shoor Caan

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 408

Wednesday 14 July 2021, 11:54

Ben Gulabin
(Glenshee)

Snaw crooned ben
toorin abuin,
still as a stookie,
nae wun skirlin.
Hairst's gowden chaff
keeks thru the white
an the brig, quate as the sabbath,
stauns wi the gates snecked ticht.

Angela Blacklock-Brown

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 407

Tuesday 13 July 2021, 12:44

T H A N E Y 

for Dominique, for Thaney

It was your own damn body
they flung you off,
the dafties in charge.
Did they not know
who you were; you who were
never going to die?
You, girl,
shouldering your environment –
marking hearts onto boulders
as you tumulted your way
to the ground.
Thaney loves,
Thaney loves…

One for the ages.
A monument of sorts, for what
was yet to come. You –
arriving by river, girl; swinging
full-bellied on the back of a sea-bird,
ambition flickering on salted mirror.
You who fly through holy nets of ritual –
golden seams gone silted and
airless hills – you knew that.
You always knew –
it was all just wailing and bells.
The marks they’ll never see.
And your own body so full of breath –
underground, reachable as an open
secret that tells you where to land.
So that you remain, needless and
uncommanded. Your coracle
of peach-skin, leaving sin on the shore
for the other ones – voices all fearty
and grave; plateaued and far, far
away now that you’re free. 

Rebecca Sharp 

Note: Traprain Law is where St Thaney / Thenew / Teneu, later St Enoch - was flung off as punishment for being pregnant (with St Mungo).

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 406

Friday 9 July 2021, 12:53

Longniddry Bents

Along the Firth of Forth
Between the headland rocks
Are strands of sloping sand.
Above the beach, low dunes.
Below, a shimmering sea
Under a changing sky.

Now blue, now grey, the sky
Is mirrored in the Forth,
On the surface of the sea.
We walk across black rocks,
Across the grassy dunes
Along the length of sand.

Yellow and coal-black sand
Under a gusting sky
Creates the crumbling dunes
Now blowing back and forth.
Remains of shells and rocks
Ground down by rain and sea.

A child runs in the sea,
After playing on the sand.
On waves, white seabirds rock,
Then soar across the sky.
Wind surfers venture forth.
Cars cluster on the dunes.

Grey buckthorn on the dunes
Pewter, like the sea,
As rain drifts down the Forth,
And glistens on the sand
Beneath a glowering sky,
While water pools on rocks.

Molluscs cling to rocks,
Samphire webs the dunes,
Gulls hover in the sky
Then dive into the sea.
Our footprints in the sand
Have washed into the Forth.

Black rocks hem the sea,
Dunes are green above the sand,
A mobile sky colours the Forth.

Morwenna Griffiths

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 405

Wednesday 7 July 2021, 17:47

Silver Circle

Moored boats loll on their aquatic bed.
Air soft, the river’s millpond-ness lulls.
The sun glints off mast-tips
and flickers in deep-current tails,
            the single sign the river moves, twitching like a cat in preyer.

Away out amidst the shammed stillness,
Seamless blue of water cracks
            to ripple silver
As if around a sudden rising spit,
            its imprint,
            a phantom sailboat’s spoor on roiling surface.

It seems to rise from deep,
            deep, this formless form
spangled by evening’s sun.
The disturbance, lucent,
tumbles silver and platinum in the still surface of the tide,
            which itself, in miracle of turning, simulates stillness.

Could this be a shoaling of waves, far from land,
or a frothing of silver darlings,
            their ghostly presence?
Or a mermaid’s ring where, as with faeries,
                        parlous entry may cost untold sorrow?

I watch from over here, high on craig
People on the path below me saunter, cycle, swim
Oblivious to the sight beyond.

And then, the silver circle wanes, is gone,
            surrendered to water’s false innocence
like the promises you make.

Rhoda Neville

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Poetry Map of Scotland: poem no. 404

Sunday 4 July 2021, 15:45

To Bute...  

A deep hull cuts across silver,
Glints of life below, spurting up
Like salmon.  

I am on the upper deck.
There is wind in
My pockets and I’m holding
It tightly.  

Hills fall shyly into the
Town. Shopfronts gather
The slipping lines and
Print them on postcards.  

The vessel unfolds itself
To the island; cars and bikes and couples,
Children with pockets
Yearning for seashells.  

A gangway sings with footsteps.
I cannot hear you, but
We are smiling
And there is salt in my hair
Already.

Sian McCluskey

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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