Seasons

Seasons
Skeich wes the hert i the spring o the year
whan the well-sawn yird begoud tae steer
an the plewlan’s promise gledened the ee
atween Balgerran an Balmaghie.

The lang het simmer cam an rowed
the haill Glenkens in a glent o gowd
an the gangan fit on the hill gaed free
atween Balgerran an Balmaghie.

Hairst an the cornriggs flisked i the wun
like a rinnan sea i the southan sun;
then ilka meeda peyed its fee
atween Balgerran an Balmaghie.

Nou the lang year’s dune, an the druim grows stey
an the snaa liggs caal ower Cairnsmore wey;
the crannreuch’s lyart on ilka tree
atween Balgerran an Balmaghie.
William Neill

from Selected Poems 1969 – 1992 (Canongate, 1994)

Reproduced by permission of the publisher.
William Neill

William Neill's diverse poetry, in Scots, Gaelic and English, was first published when he was in his fifties; he saw it as 'a standing up for the small tongues against the big mouths'.

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