Scots Poems From Giraffe Poem by Sheena Blackhall

Scots Poems From Giraffe

Cam, lat us spikk in the leid o oor forefaithers
Lat us sing oot blithely usin the guid Scots wirds
Spik it in luve, in rage, in clishmaclavers
Spik it oot loud, that at last it will be heard

Wirds that are teuch as a crag o granite rock
Wirds as lichtsome as ony wyvers moosewabs
Wirds that are close as bluid, as prayer, as kiss
Wirds heard in lauchter, heard in a murners' sabs

Cam, lat us spikk in the leid o oor forefaithers
Lat us sing oot blithely in the guid Scots wirds
Spik it in luve, in rage, in clishmaclavers
Spik it oot loud, that at last it will be heard

Wirds in the sklaik o fermers, media bodies
Wirds that are spakk bi the antrin dominie
Wirds pit in the bairn rhymes o the nation's littlins
Fand whyles in a meenister's langamachie

Cam, lat us spikk in the leid o oor forefaithers
Lat us sing oot blithely in the guid Scots wirds
Spik it in luve, in rage, in clishmaclavers
Spik it oot loud, that at last it will be heard

Wirds that are dear, thon spikk weel lued an couthie
Wirds fur flytin, wirds as swete's the dew
Wirds as precious as Willie Dunbar's rhymin
Wirds wi smeddum, caller, an thrawn an true

Cam, lat us spikk in the leid o oor forefaithers
Lat us sing oot blithely in the guid Scots wirds
Spik it in luve, in rage, in clishmaclavers
Spik it oot loud, that at last it will be heard

The Buik o Deer: Exhibited Aberdeen Art Gallery 9/7/22-2/10/22
A sacred buik, tenth century
Wis screived bi the monks o Deer
Twis a pre-Norman manuscript
In the Pictish rulers' sphere

Celtic picturs, Latin texts
Gaelic in a monk's haun
Survived richt doon the ages
Frae the mists o guid Scotland

This pooch sized treisured Gospel buik
Has kent a rowth o hames
Frae the Varsity o Cambridge
Mony on it laid claims

The monastery at Deer wis run
Bi the Cistercian order
Here fifty monks wid pray an wark
Wi eident haly ardour

The fower evangelists are drawn
Inbye the sacred pages
Picturs o draigon, corbie, chiel
Vrocht bi thon auncient sages

In time the yird micht yield its hoard
Thon biggins still untracked
Far langsyne, ben their Abbey waas
In prayer, the brithers wauked

Growin auld
Ma taenails hae grown as hard as rock
Ma skin flakes aff like poodery chakk
Ma snoot his stertit sprootin hair
Twa shelt mou bags are ma brassiere
Ma een wi cataracts are blearie
Ma lugs are deef as a timmer cheerie
Ma kyte spreids oot like a plate o jeely
Ma bowels can open betimes ower freely
Ma hair is hudderie, it's run amuck
In fack, the hale o me's gaen tae f…

The Auld Fowks' Hame
Devaul at the front yett
Press the bell an wyte
Weir yer anti-covid mask
The nurse'll lat ye in.

The lichts are on aa day,
Like gloamin time, sae cosy
The heatin's a hett dwaum
The merchandise dwines easy

There's a faint guff o pee
There is a rowth o zimmers
Cerclin like cowboy waggons
Bit nae a fear o ony steer

Daith causes a minor stooshie
Curtains hap the corp
The body's wheeched awa upon a trolly
The unnertakkers are baith faist an skeely

Puckles o fowk are sleepin
Heids sidiewyes they slump like thrappled chuckens
Aabody weirs bauchles ower their bunions

Time fur tay an pieces,
The rattle o speens in cups

The veesitors hae gaen
Back tae their ain consarns
The consarns o the leevin
Slawly, the fees o the Hame ett up
Fit's left o ony inheritance

The option is tae dae the darg thirsels
The sleepless nichts, the Altzheimers, the hippens

The parents they leave ahin
Are in Daith's wytin room

Auld Annie's in her cheer, her heid draps doon
Time fur her peels, teeth in a joog, her goun.

Aywis ma aunt Belle tuik me
Tae veesit the new incomer
Laid aside his mither
The day auld calfie

He lay in a taigle o strae
Like a fish catched in a net
Ower young tae ken fleg or roose
Aa mou, an the bleat o hunger

His mou fu o milky bubbles
His jack knifed shanks
Aa hyterin an warssles
His warld, at saxes an sivvens

Virr grew like a driven drill
Throw ilkie skirp an girsle o his hide
He wis the perfeck blueprint o a bull

His een, wi speirins fu
Thonner in the staa, sae vulnerable

The Moch
I like tae gae furth incognito
Be anon like a zingy mosquito
Gin ye feel a wee draucht
As a waucht fore an aft
Dinna worry, I'm hermless, amigo

The Terrible Cook
Aince I cooked a pottie o mince
Twa days in the summer it sat
Fin I heatit it up the mince meeved
Wi maggots, baith shoogly an fat

Aince I byled twa eggs in a pan
Thinkin they wid taste fine wi breid sodjers
I lat them byle dry bi mistakk
An they endit up broon, hard as boulders

Aince I ettled tae makk lentil soup
Nae readin the richt quantities
An the lentils swalled up ower the pot
I wis wydin through soup tae ma knees

Ance I steered up some joogs o hame brew
At midnicht I heard an explosion
The brew wis like dynamite, strang
The ceilin wis dreepin in potion

Noo I buy ready meals frae the shop
The microwave's bin ma salvation
As lang as I keep the times richt
Or the meal turns intae a cremation

Ma Cousin wis a Deevilick
Ma cousin wis a deevilick
Tae sin wis his delicht
He filed his horns tae his skull
His hooves, kept ooto sicht

His forkit tail wis hidden
Fin he lat lowse a fart
It smelt o fire an brimstane
Suspicious, fur a start

He leed, he reived, tormentit
Wee beasties…pued their wings
An niver aince wis punished
Bi bites or sooks or stings

He blew up wee green puddocks
Until they burst, gaed BANG
He thrappled baby birdies
An chokit ooto their sang

His ma thocht him an angel
Sae blin she cudnae see
The deevilick in her dearie
Thon ace o deevilry

Dauncin Hens
See the hens line dauncin!
Wi a tuck-tuck-tucky
Till the eggs are comin
An they're cluck-cluck-clucky

Then it's aff tae the hen hoose
Tae fire oot double yokers
Wi a rat-at-at-tat-tat
Frae thon high pouered broody cluckers

Hens in the fairmyaird
Hens in the shed
Oh it's hunt the eggies
In the gangrel's bed

The Hurcheon
The hurcheon has an itchy dowp
His prickles help tae scratch it
He'll hae a flech, bit, pick him up
Ye can rest assured ye'll catch it

Root-toot-toot- tootin: the Hoolet
Root-toot-tootin wis aywis hootin
He'd een like satellite dishes
An tae flee tae Mars an veesit the stars
Wir twa o thon hoolet's wishes

He hitched a life on a rocket ship
An aff tae Mars he flew
Naethin wis there bit stoor an win
Nae a midge nor a cockatoo

The meen wis waur- a birlin steen
Nae a moose or a cheese fur peckin
Sae he flew back hame an tuik the bus
Tae a tree in Ecclefechan

For och, quo the hoolet as sure's ma nemme
Is Root-toot-toot-hoot-tootin
Staycations' are best- ye can keep the rest
Space traivel is warld pollutin

Oor Cat
Twa threids an a thrum her purrs vibrate
An cures a melancholic state
In aa the warld, fit makks it rosie's
A purrin kittlin in yer bosie

Rainy Days
Hair like cat's sookins
Brollies dreepin like linns
Fowk shauchle ontae the bus
Like drooned rats

The windaes are gummy an fogged
Runnels o watter
Rin doon their faces like tears
Passengers sit in weet claes
Disjaskit an scunnert

It's weather fur dyeuks or trooties
The lift is blae as a heidstane
Bus wheels splyter ben puddles
In pot holes the cooncil canna afford tae plaster ower

I Hae News Fur Ye: Ninth Century Irish poem
Anonymous: (Screived bi a monk on the edge of his manuscript in the 9th century, Ireland)
I hae news fur ye:
The stag bells, winter snaas, simmer has gane
Win heich an cauld, the sun laigh, short its wye
The sea rinnin heich.
Deep reid the heath; its marra is tint;
The wud goose has raised its ordnar skreich,
Cauld has grippit the birdies' wings;
Sizzen o ice, this is ma news.

Scots Owersetts of 6 Italian Poems

Alla Sera/ To Evening by Ugo Foscolo
Mebbe because yer the verra makk o thon daithly quaet
Sae lued bi me, ye hae cam,
O gloamin! An fin blythe simmer clouds
An the douce wast win are yer fiers,
An fin frae snawy meevin heichts
Ye sen shaddas an derkness intae the warld,
Ye sclimm doon, socht aywis, an saftly haud
The secret weys o ma hairt.

Ye makk ma thochts wanner, thochts
That intae aybydaun naethin; betimes
This coorse time flees, an wi it, the thrang
Of cares that ding me doon;
An whyle I luik on yer peace, thon warlike speerit
Sleeps, that roars inbye me.

Il Lampo/The Lichtnin byGiovanni Pascoli
An lift an eirde shawed fit they were like:
The eirde pechin, ragin, in a steer;
The lift, wechty, waesome, foonert:
Pure fite in the seelent stramash
A hoose appeared, dwined in the glisk o an ee;
Like an eebaa, that, swalled, horrifeed,
Lowsed an steekit itsel, in the pit-mirk nicht.

L'Infinito/ The Infinite by Giacomo Leopardi
Aywis tae me this lanely knowe wis lued
An the hedgerow creepin ower an aywis hidin
The hynie-awa, the horizon's farrest ootraxx.
Bit as I sit an glower, there's an eynless
Airt still ayont, there is a mair than mortal
Seelence spreid oot tae the hinmaist deeps o peace,
Which in ma thocht I shape til ma hairt
Scarce can hide a fleg. An as the win
Cams throw the trees maenin tae ma lugs,
The uneyndan seelence an the passin voice
I maun compare: myndin the sizzons,
Quaet in deid eternity, an eenoo,
Livin an soundin still. An intae this
Immensity ma thocht sinks iver droonin,
An it's douce tae shipwrack in sic a sea.

Rimani / Stay by Gabriele D'Annunzio
Bide! Dauchle aside me.
Dinna gae.
I'll watch ye. I'll proteck ye.
Ye'll regret onythin bit camin tae me, free, prood.
I lue ye. I dinna hae ony thocht that isnae yours;
I hae nae desire in the bluid that isnae fur ye.
Ye ken. I dinna see in ma life anither fier, I see nae ither blytheness
Dauchle. Dinna be feart o onythin.
Sleep the nicht on ma hairt…

San Martino / Saint Martin's Day by Giosuè Carducci
The mist sclimms tae the steep knowe
Amid the rain,
An unner the mistral
The sea skirls an fitens:
Bit throw the lanes o the clachan
Frae the hotterin vats
Gaes the soor guff o wine
The sowels rejoice in.

The spit birls on burnin logs, spirkin;
The hunter stauns fusslin
At the yett tae luik
Amang the reidish clouds
At a heeze o blackies in the gloamin
Migratin like exiled thochts

Three Scots owersetts of Poems by Salvatore Quasimodo

Enemy of Death by Salvatore Quasimodo (For Rossana Sironi)
Ye shouldnae hae rived oot yer pictur
Taen frae us, frae the warld,
A nippick o bonnieness.
Fit can we dae, we faes o daith,
Booed tae yer feet o rose,
Yer breist o violet?
Nae a wird, nae a skirp o yer hinmaist day, a Na
Tae eirde's ferlies, a Na
Tae oor dreich human record.
The dowie meen in simmer,
The ruggin anchor, tuik
Yer dreams, knowes, trees,
Licht, watters, derkness,
Nae blearie thochts bit truiths,
Cuttit frae the harns
That o a suddenty decided,
Time an aa future coorseness.
Noo ye are steekit
Ahin wechty yetts
Fae o daith.

Fa greets?
Ye hae blawn oot bonnieness
Wi a braith, rived her,
Gaen her the daith-cloor,
Wioot a greet
Fur her lifeless shadda
Spreidin ower us.
Connached alaneness,
An bonnieness, foonert.
Ye hae signalled
Intae the derk,
Scrived yer nemme in air,
Yer Na
Tae aathin that gaithers here
An ayont the win.
I ken fit ye were
Luikin for in yer new dress.
I unnerstaun the unreponed speirin.
Neither for ye nor wirsels, a repon.
Och, flooers an fogg,
Och, fae o daith.

Street in Agrigentum by Salvatore Quasimodo
There is still the win that I mynd
Kinnlin the manes o shelts, racin,
Slantin, ower the plains,
The win that merks an scoors the sanstane,
And the hairt o derksome columns, telamons,
Cowpit in the girse. Speerit o the auncients, grey
Wi wershness, return on the win,
Breath in thon feather-licht fogg
That haps thon giants, hurled doon bi heiven.
Foo alane in the neuk that's still yours!
An greater, yer skaith, gin ye hear, aince mair,
The soun that meeves, hyne aff, towards the sea,
Far Hesperus straiks the lift wi day-brakk:
The jew's-harp dirls
In the waggoner's mou
As he sclimbs the knowe o meenlicht, slaw,
In the mummle o Saracen olive trees.

Wind at Tindari by Salvatore Quasimodo
Tindari, I ken ye
Douce atween braid knowes, raxxin ower the watters
Of the god's braw islands.
Eenoo, ye face me
An brakk intae ma hairt.

I sclimm heivenly taps, crags,
Follaein the win in the pines,
An the bourach o them, lichtly gaun wi me,
Flee aff intae the air,
Wave o luve an soun,
An ye takk me tae ye,
Ye frae far I wrangly drew
Coorseness, an fear o seelence, shadda,
- bield o douceness, aince siccar -
an daith o speerit.

It is unkent tae ye, thon kintra
Far ilkie day I gae doon deep
Tae nourish secret syllables.
A different licht strips ye, ahin the windaes
Claithed in nicht,
An anither bltheness than mine
Lies agin ye.

Exile is wersh
An the search, fur harmony, that eyndit in ye
Cheenges noo
Tae an early worry aboot daith,
An ilkie luve is a shield agin waeness,
A seelent stair in the mirk,
Far ye plunk me
Tae brakk ma wersh breid.

Cam back, peacefu Tindari,
Steer me, swete frien,
Tae heist masel tae the lift frae the rock,
Sae that I micht shape fear, fur fowk fa dinna ken
Fit deep win has fand me.

Solar Siblings
Nine planets heich in their orbits birl,
Mercury, Venus, Mars,
Five meens aroon Uranus furl,
Bricht skirps o yalla stars.

Saturn's rings an Jupiter's lamps
Shine oot in the inky nicht,
Far icicle Neptune, cauld an deid,
An pysonous Pluto's plooky heid,
Circle the sun, a furnace reid,
The source o the solar licht.

The flooer o them aa is a smaa green baa
Wi a toorie o snaa on tap,
Australia's croon hings upside doon
Jist roon fae the polar cap.
Auld Earth, wi its seas, its cloods, its trees
An its littlins in its lap!

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