He’s five year auld, he’s aff tae school,Fairmer’s bairn, wi a pencil an a rule,His teacher scoffs when he says ‘hoose’,‘The word is “house”, you silly little goose.’He tells his Ma when he gets backHe saw a ‘mouse’ in an auld cairt track.His father laughs fae the stack-yard dyke, ‘Yon’s a “moose”, ye daft wee […]
You could travel up the Blue Nile
with your finger, tracing the route
while Mrs Tilscher chanted the scenery.
Tana. Ethiopia. Khartoum. Aswân.
That box held the moon and the sun and more,
a stash that made you superheroic,
expert on constellations and the zodiac,
the universe studding your bedroom floor.
When we went to the grammar school
/ the teacher said,
/ ‘You A-stream girls
/ will go out in the world
/ and be doctors and lawyers.
In the old country school
/ under the cool of the tree
/ I scribbled
/ on the dust’s pages
/ and the wind
/ my unfailing teacher
/ blew away my…
I would have skipped the stupid games,
/ long afternoons spent chilled in goal,
/ or sleepy, scratching, in deep field,