Lyrics written out in the diary.
‘Oh what a parish, a terrible parish
Oh what a parish is that of Dunkeld
They hang’d their minister
Drooned their presenter
Burned down the steeple
And fuddled the bell.
The steeple was doon, but the kirk was still standing,
They biget a lumb where the bell used to hang
A still pot they got
And they brewed Highland whiskey
On Sunday’s they drank it and ranted and sang.
Oh had you but seen how graceful they looked
To see the crammed pews so socially joined
MacDonald the piper stood up in the pulpit
He made the pipes skirl out the music divine.
Wi whiskey and beer they would curse ‘n they’d swear
they’d argue and fight like you’d dare nae tell
About Geordie and Charlie they bothered feu early
Wi whiskey they’re worse than the devil himsel’
When the hearts leering spirits had mounted their garrets
To a ball on the green they all did ajourn
The maids were coarse kilted
They skipped and they lilted
When tired they shook hands and then hame did return.
If the kirks all oor Scotland
Held like social meetings
Nay warning you’d need from a far tinkling bell,
For true love and friendship will draw you together
Far better than roaring the horrors of hell!
Oh what a parish…….’
Here is a rather wonderful link to Silly Wizard performing this song quite a wee while ago.
(2018 – Lyrics copied out into diary. I remember vividly the first time I ever heard this old Scottish song. A dear friend broke into song in the pub one night, I had had no idea, at that time, that she had such a beautiful singing voice! The whole pub fell silent.
I got the lyrics and tried to learn it, but soon found that it is an incredibly testing song to sing, using a big range. I can do a passable version, but nothing like her! Tragically that dear friend is no longer with us, taken by pancreatic cancer, unexpectedly and swiftly, leaving both a loving partner, children and young grand children behind her….she had all to live for. You are missed M. x)
The Queen of all Argyll
Gentlemen it is my duty
To inform you of one beauty,
Tho I’d ask of you a favor not to seek her for a while.
I own she is a creature of character and feature
No words can paint the picture of the Queen of all Argyll.
And if you could have seen her
Boys if you had just been there
The swan was in her movements
And the morning in her smile.
All the roses of the garden bow and beg her pardon
For none can match the beauty of the queen of all Argyll.
On the evening that I mentioned
I passed with light intention
Through a part of our dear country
Known for beauty and for style
In a place of noble thinkers
Of scholars and great drinkers
But above them all in splendor
Shone the queen of all Argyll.
So my lads I needs must leave you.
My intention’s not to grieve you,
Nor indeed would I deceive you,
I’ll see you in a while.
I must find some way to go to her.
Court her and to claim her.
I fear my heart’s in danger from the queen of all Argyll.
(2018 – Based on memories and kind of unfinished and clumsy. Pen rambling)
At seventeen I left this country
Couldn’t wait to get away
I travelled down to London town
To check out other ways.
I innocently wandered through
The dark, crazed streets alone
I met the first black man I ever knew
Who offered me his heart and home
He was a beefy boxer
Twin brothers, he had earned some fame
They heralded from Jamacia
Pete Wilson was his name
He gave me pride in knowing
That his culture could also be mine
‘Respect the noble warrior’
The lesson of that time.
He shared with me another side
I side I would have never known
If he had not seen me wandering by
And stopped to say ‘hello’
I got a place in college
to study art and muck around
I had to leave that lovely man
’cause he tried to catch me and wrestle me to the ground
I’d fallen in with my own folk
He understood that lovely bloke
My college years had just begun
Years of innocence, abuse and fun
We lived all over South London then
Crashing out in the early morning
Playing with the city and living out our aimless dreams
Filling up with flying ambitions
And chasing our irreverent dreams.
Thank you Pete, for holding my hand as I met that wonderful city.
Forever grateful.Someone to hold my hand
Cutting through, frae Kennacraig to Islay,
Nostalgic wonder tinged with excitement,
To find my love at Finlaggan Loch and whisper sweet something to the ancient wind
Just to sit and swim a while
While brave heart finds it purpose,
In the man I love.
“Outside is all noise.
The dripping roar of rain on leaves and the top of the tin -top caravan. The flick and buzz of flies as they hit the windows panes luring, bright light.
It’s past midnight and my head hurts from premonition and the lack of ability to define.
“In this life so much magik weaving…….?
Oh muse, where have you been?”
REAL TIME……are we arriving there?
Losing the Ego……what happens if ALL people begin to evolve in this direction?
The return of Merlin to Avalon…..(recognition of our true heros/leaders that loose the ego)
Shapeshifting. Animist. Fertility.
(the Felindyrch shape-shifter that murdered the seven sons of Merlin……?)
Merlin vs Pan?
These synchronicities why are they so important and how do they fit together!?”
(2017 – Surprised by how contemporary this piece of writing feels for me now.)
‘Welcome to the restless confusion of coming into a new era.
Listen to the jangled tones of realization.
Can we evolve fast enough in this ancient new tangent?
What we have been saying for years appears to be changing the world, but not as I’d envisioned exactly.
Madness invades the integral core of my pumping brain.
Power so huge I cannot get my arms around it. Cannot grasp it.
Are there other worlds outside this idyll now that are worth exploring again?
I have reached this age when I am turning and facing myself.
And I do not see anything there at all.
And when I think of who I really am, I cannot really face it, accept it or become.
Become into being
(Desperately needing purpose still.)’
‘In the garden:-
dig and sow 4 more rows of French beans
mow back lawn
straw/mulch for strawberries (pine needles? Dunans? bags?)
weeding, watering, weediing
cut forest paths back
build bender benches/bed
dig fire pit
sow chamomile and borage….central patch?
buy carrots/beetroot/winter/spring cabbage/swedes
Dense, sensitive, slow hum,
Hum humming of life.
Flutter of butterfly wings
and chirrup of buzzing things.
The trickle chuckle river and the
warm, ticklish air.
I should throw myself down in the long, itchy grass.
I should walk, feel free and strong….
But I just will lay here, feeling good
for not doing.
What I should.
(If I cannot focus my energy into something soon I shall……..?)
Seagulls call and whirl.
Like black spots in the back of my eye.
Picked out against the blinding sky.
Swallow tail swift,
forked slender arrow.
Dove coo, ancient, wood-wise.
A car brakes through and then away.
Bleating lambs, skimble and moan for their mothers.
African music, low and happy,
Accompanies the scene.
Breezes, breezy, blowing lightly.
Yellow poppies bow and bend.
So slow and sweet.
” An old friend of mine arrived back in the country. He’s laying low, reviewing life and all that. He reminded me about writing.
“Have you been writing?” he asked.
That was all he needed to say.
If only I could feel that writing was worth it……after living with the tribe, the purity of ‘life without education’, without the conscious ‘head space’ of putting pen to paper, I find it difficult to arrange myself into that mode. Yet my thinking processes are so clear, so radical, the daily revelations and inspirations crowd my head.
This frustrated creation.
Automatically when I write I seem to take on a pompous overview, it’s almost as if I have a written accent…..that is proving impossible to shake.
Whenever I seize a pen the ‘I’ syndrome takes over – gone are the loose, fluid imaginings, replaced by stoic observations and “What will I write?”
Most importantly, I do not, generally, like what I produce, largely because it does not bear any resemblance to what I know I could, if only I could loose these tensions in my thinking.
I revert back to automatic writing regularly in an attempt to free myself – but this is often vague to the other extreme!
There is a deep knowledge inside of me, that tells me what I could be worth, but fear I will never achieve, is dampening the desire to even begin fulfilling these deep, driving dreams.’