Category Archives: Scotland

Flat periwinkles (a pantoum)

Whenever I’m over in the west – as I am now – I walk the beach nearby the village and pick up shells. I am incapable of walking on any beach, anywhere, and not picking up shells. Being the west coast, the … Continue reading

Posted in pantoum, poetry, Scotland, verse | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

An encounter with Captain Wedderburn

Yesterday I visited Rosslyn Chapel. It wasn’t raining, I wanted to get out of the city for a couple of hours and the chapel does, of course, have some of the finest and most characterful mediaeval stone carvings in Scotland, … Continue reading

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Selkies

It’s been a while since I posted on a folksong but I’ve had one going around in my mind for a fair time. It’s Child Ballad no. 113, The Great Silkie of Sule Skerrie. The version in my music collection … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, folk music, folk song, Kidnapped, Nineteenth century fiction, Robert Louis Stevenson, Scotland | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

A land divided: songs and politics in Kidnapped

More thoughts of Scottish history remembered in song again this time. One of my favourite rainy day books (and today is a very rainy day) is Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson (1886). It’s set in 1751, in the aftermath of … Continue reading

Posted in Appin Murder, Highland politics, Jacobite uprising, Kidnapped, Robert Louis Stevenson, Scotland | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Blood in the borders

Very short post this one: a reminder that the United Kingdom hasn’t always been so, and may not be so again. History’s a bloody, messy thing and today’s a day to remember that. It’s the 499th anniversary of the battle of … Continue reading

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