Between the Waves

Between the Waves

We are drawn
                       to the sea,
Where the  tide
                       never fails,
When the water
                       is clear
And the cold
                       winds are tamed.

Let there be
                      no more storms,
Nor a shift 
                      in the sands.
Let us pause
                     for a while,
Let us swim
                     in the calm

Forest Cottage


The forest is winning again,
in its own relentless way.
It is pulling this old cottage
back into its deeper self,
reclaiming this precious space,
slowly restoring the balance.

It is nature that is cracking
these walls, its weighty growth
that his broken through the roof.
But, there is no real death here,
there is only life that can
no longer be held at bay.

You arrived here by chance,
now take the time to look around.
Touch new leaves, smell wild flowers,
feel the air, fresh from the forest.
Take your leave in your own good time, 
there is no need to close the gate.

Light does not stray here anymore,
It passes through these broken walls.

Sounds do not echo anymore,
There is no roof to hold them in.

The scents of life have gone from here,
Decay grabs my every breath.

I touch the walls, but they are cold,
The hearth has left them long ago.

Yet, still my shadow flickers through
To signal that life carries on.

My feet still rap on the stone floor,
Like the heartbeat of the world out there.

And carried here on a brief wind,
The smell of the forest ghosts by.

On the window sill, a flower grows,
I reach out, touch it, then let it go.


The ruins of Polmaddy, a traditional Galloway ferm-toun (farming village), can still be seen in a clearing of Castlemaddy Wood (just of the A713 nr Carsphairn). Changes in farming in the 18th and 19th centuries led to the abandonment of many such small farm villages in the area. The earliest reference to Polmaddy was in the 16th centur


If words have ghosts,
they are wandering these fields,
whispering of an absent town
and lives that could last no longer.

If names have hearts,      
Polmaddy's has been broken                                                                                          
by the bitterest cut of all.
It lost its reason to be.

If stones have souls,
then let these ones rest in peace.
They had their time, let them settle
into the earth of their story


Polmaddy, stones in an open field,
Braille for a low sun’s fingers, waiting
For the light to trace it’s pages.

There’s the pack road, almost rubbed out,
And there, the inn, the house of stories.
That thin line, the mill race where water flowed
To turn the wheel that fed them all.

Two houses side by side, to share
Warmth and the gossip of the day.
Here and there, clearance cairns, where fields
Were opened and furrows written.

Now the sun goes down, closing
The covers on another day, leaving
Only silence and words in the dark.