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An Auld Mans Fantice by Sam Gilliland

16th October 2014

Nice to hear from Sam Gilliland who lives partly in Dunragit near Stranraer, and partly in Portugal.  Sam has long been an active enthusiast in Scots language poetry. Way back in 1973 he was one of the founding organisers of the Scottish International Open Poetry Competition. This competition was connected with MacDiarmid and always had a strong Scots poetry section. It ran till 2005. Our photograph shows him at one of the S.I.O.P.'s presentations at Ayr Burns Club.

In this rhyming sonnet, Gilliland looks at the Arran skyline and discussing various religious interpretations from the landscape and peaks. He concludes by wryly referring to cuckoos around the bens.

An Auld Man's Fantice by Sam Gilliland

Sheddaed in the lispin sea, Arran's bens,
Auncient tours, bleck, buirdly, whaur sterk stanes speak.
Haudin furth the Almichty's saft silhouette,
Bluid rid gin a ruby sun whiles forfens
The ee frae wha's wha, peak frae peak;
Jerusalem, kythand clere, begylet
Ither een pickin oot a crucifix
Mangst the wracked faith o flinders deep-lairin
Ayont sheddas threidit thrae a thrawn sky;
Och, cam the whisper, there's mair nor the mix
O skellums here the nicht, thare's Judas, sharin
Siller wi sojers, an thare's Pilate, forbye;
A geth'rin o gouks, it worthis nae weir;
Myndin thir bens, for me, aye sal ye beir.