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PART OF THE Scots, Whay-hay! ISSUE

‘On any showing, the scale and quality of this movement is a phenomenon rarely paralleled in literary history.’

The twentieth-century Scottish Renaissance saw a dramatic change in Scotland’s literary landscape, where our writers increasingly engaged with social and political issues and bestowed, once more, a literary status to the Scots language. A Kist o Skinklan Things is a brilliant selection of the best work from this period. Reaquaint yourself with some of Scotland’s most inspirational poetry.

 

Extract from A Kist o Skinklan Things
Edited by J. Derrick McClure
Published by ASLS

 

 

Thesaurus Paleo-Scoticus

I mind when I was a bairnie hou ma mither
brocht out ae day a kist o skinklan things,
ferlies I thocht them, ilk mair rare nor anither,
aa kind o gowdies, stanes and chains and rings,
braw orleges that made her guidsire vauntie,
auld fallals that belanged her grannie’s auntie.
I thocht ma forebears maun be queens and kings,
sic sma delytes can mak a bairnie canty.
I’m canty yet wi sma delytes, albeid
ma baird’s sae black and swack. I ken a thing
that’s like a kist o ferlies gif ye read.
Frae Jamieson’s muckle buik the words tak wing,
auld douce or ramstam, lown or virrfu words,
for musardry o thocht or grame o dirds,
our forebears useit, to flyte or scryve or sing.
I’d wuss to be a falkner o sic birds.

Douglas Young

 

Pantoum fer Winter

doun riven the tint braith
mawkin scribbles owre the snaw
wee arles o sun-daith
water warstles wechty, slaw

mawkin scribbles owre the snaw
sternies bou tae the mockrife mune
water warstles wechty, slaw
nou the taid an puddock sloum

sternies bou tae the mockrife mune
houlets hunker saft as haar
nou the taid an puddock sloum
grippit fest in dwinin lair

houlets hunker saft as haar
winter’s nieve is cauld an sterk
grippit fest in dwinin lair
aa maun learn tae dree the mirk

winter’s nieve is cauld an sterk
doun riven the tint braith
aa maun learn tae dree the mirk
wee arles o sun daith

Kate Armstrong

 

The Makar

Nae man wha loves the lawland tongue
But warsles wi’ the thocht—
There are mair sangs that bide unsung
Nor a’ that hae been wrocht.

Ablow the wastrey o’ the years,
The thorter o’ himsel’,
Deep buried in his bluid he hears
A music that is leal.

And wi’ this lealness gangs his ain;
And there’s nae ither gait
Though a’ his feres were fremmit men
Wha cry: Owre late, owre late.

William Soutar

 

A Kist o Skinklan Things edited by J. Derrick McClure is published by ASLS, priced £14.95

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