Northwords Now Issue 40

The FREE literary magazine of the North

The Wye Athin Chynges

by Edith Harper

Daunderin alang the beach makin siccar
tae haud awa fae the wee purpie scalders –
an amethyst necklace strung oot alang the tideline.
Sunsheen glisters like gowd oan the waves.
Nae soond bit the saft sough o the sea.
A guff fae a tangle o seaweed
that Ah kin taste oan ma saut-stung mou.

A at eence a stushie gets up fan boorach o seagows
stairts tae fecht oer a puckle fish or breid.
Syne, ae gow flees up an awa, a bittock in his yella neb
an the hale murtherous clamjamfrey gies chase.
The skraich o the gows cairried oan the Atlantic win
maks me think o the greetin o exiles, drien fae this lan,
fa traivelled athort the braid streetch o the ocean.

Ahint this strand lies the lan they left
fan it wis gien oer tae hedder an yowes.
An och, thon wis a dowie time.
Weel, the hedder’s aye there bit the yowes are lang gane,
an a the hooses an steadins nocht bit a rickle o stanes.
Noo the lan is hame tae groose an peesie-weeps,
towerists, waukers an midgie-ridden lochans.