Tag Archives: Scotland

Poetry Map of Scotland, poem 131: Balumbie, near Dundee

Thanks to Stanza for adding my poem ‘Developing’ to the Poetry Map of Scotland.

the StAnza Blog


“So Boo,” I whisper, “are we the old guard now?”

Boo glances at me then turns,
To sample a palimpsest of recent smells.
Food, mate, rival, friend, foe, fear, but definitely –


We out-flank Elm Gardens and Lime Grove,
On our own retreat from Moscow,
Rusting gorgets and ragged overcoats,
Shamefaced in the morning damps,
As we scatter dew drops from cobwebs,
Before suburbia stirs awake.

Silvered traces fade camouflaged
Dazzled under slick tar macadam
But I can still glimpse some prior paths
Still trace glinting scents of earlier intentions.

The rhody walk now rose-bayed over
Was once a road to her absent Mandalays.
A peripheral sniffer regularly hesitant,
By the sponge soft sequoia sequoia.
Hoodie damp, behaviour uncertain,
Prospects – not good.

Target spears like checkered survey pins
Chased with homecoming penants
Snap over freshly hoovered turf.
Yellow on green: please repair.

When they broke ground…

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The Fairy Hill

Schiehallion montage
If you prefer to listen to ‘The Fairy Hill’ please click below:

The Fairy Hill*

Smooth a silken net about
Her swelling form and curve
Uncertain details into definition,
To measure her amount.

Know the lines,
Estimate the lineage,
And weave contours
All around her fullnesses
To catch our new idea. Continue reading

Slippery when wet…

Another rainy day, with a side order of stair-rods, low cloud, and – oh-yes! – a wee bit more rain.  But this is Scotland, and a damp and soggy ticket is the price of entry.  Compensation comes on the days when the skies clear.  Global Warming may be drying the uplands – the bogs don’t seem as boggy as when I was a young ‘un – but yet not so much that there isn’t still green a-plenty gaze upon while wandering the wonders of Scotia’s highlands.

Today my wanderings were nearer sea level, and of a more cultural hue, as I encountered Aert at the Dundee Contemporary Art Centre.  ‘Infinite Jest’ is an interesting exhibition, made more so by a rainy-day lack of desire to rush about which found me with time to watch the accompanying short documentary, so I emerged informed as well as entertained.  But here’s a thing…

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