Aberdeenshire Poems

Shire Fields

By Drumwhindle: On a slope

of the old railway line.

Below, three dogs as wet as fog,

scatter combed shire-crumb.

No-one to call them,

their fur dagged with loam,

as if they could run

for a month and never tire.

My mind flips. I look

for vulnerable livestock,

but see none.

Under the shadow of this cold front,

the hedgerow willow backs and bellies.

Its spite robbed by the wind.

Even with two woollen hats,

my earlobes tingle.

Bernard Briggs

Shire Hills

At last, I’m leaning

my back against cold concrete.

Mither Tap’s trig-point,

a small shelter. To the west,

sky less blue. Summit smudges

rolling against each other. Incoming

clouds rain-dragging to the north-east.

A storm, due later over Kinnaird head.

Plucking a heather-head

from between two smoothed stones,

I hold it up to the sun; sepals cupping

pink urn-shaped flowers.

Nature could teach my boots

a thing or two about design.

Bernard Briggs