Natural Magic project with North Light Arts (poetry commission)

I was delighted to be asked to attend two wonderful events as part of North Light Arts’ Natural Magic Project in Dunbar. I was asked to collect, reflect and create some poems. The following poems are inspired by The Apple Day at Belhaven Community Garden, and Bees and Teas with the ‘Club’ at Backlands’ Community Garden.


It’s a cauld day, aye.

The wind. The wind.

It gets ye. Right in

yer bones. Settles

there. Beds down to

Spring. It gets ye

and the tender plants too.

Ye need yer roots to survive it.

It’s aye, a cauld, cauld day.

A Hoolie comes fae the Forth.

Skims a stone to knock

us sideways, all ways, aye.      

Bee Man Chats Bees

Bees are bees are bees.

No! They get confused with other bees.

The Honey Bee. It looks like a wasp.

Oh Aye! Just looks like a wasp see?

Honey Bees live in colonies.

Two hundred and fifty drones, fifty thousand worker bees

They’d be busy!

What’s the lifespan-then?

A Worker bee? Oh! Just six weeks. Worked to death.

Aye, Aye. Well. There’s truth to that.

Naomi’s Tour

Eager after Naomi

each story she tells

each moment she takes  

for us, we make note

the apple trees.

Mrs McManus’ Raspberry Canes.

Stopping, feeding like birds

from the tree, reaching out

its plums- the wee treasures.

Now, by the field we remember

from the windows of all our trains

the sunflowers that shone out their

welcome. Sunny Dunny. Haste ye hame.

Apple Day

The Sunset. The Katy.

Apple wine. Tin cups.

Scotch Dumpling. Charles Ross.

Summer’s wee apple boys, working the press.

The Fortune. The Red Sleeves.

Sharing hard won juice, happy crumble mess.

Away in, at our long table, just for a bit, stay,

and bring your pie dish, or share mine- it’s Apple Day!