Sunday, August 19, 2007

Scotland by Alastair Reid


A fine poem, it captures my country and my people:


Scotland

It was a day peculiar to this piece of the planet,
when larks rose on long thin strings of singing
and the air shifted with the shimmer of actual angels.
Greenness entered the body. The grasses
shivered with presences, and sunlight
stayed like a halo on hair and heather and hills.
Walking into town, I saw, in a radiant raincoat,
the woman from the fish-shop. 'What a day it is!'
cried I, like a sunstruck madman.
And what did she have to say for it?
Her brow grew bleak, her ancestors raged in their graves
as she spoke with their ancient misery:
'We'll pay for it, we'll pay for it, we'll pay for it!'



Perfect!!

5 comments:

Anne-Marie said...

My Dad, born in Baillieston nr. Glasgow, would have truly loved this!

Anne-Marie said...

My Dad, born in Baillieston nr. Glasgow, would have truly loved this!

Vicki McFarlane said...

Being Scottish, I love it. There are, however, some that I like better i.e. "Don't Gossip" by Rabbie Burns.

Gently scan your brother man,
still gentler sister woman
Though they may gang a kennin wrang
To step aside is human.



Carla Huisman said...

This brings back a memory of sitting in a field on a sunny day picking buttercups with my sister & cousins, I was only about 4 years old at the time, but that memory will stay with me forever

Stooshie said...

Great poem, Tom. I live in the vicinity of where this poem describes, in Galloway, & it aye makes me smile - true, to the point, poetic but blunt.