Scottish Poetry Selection
- Country Quiet

Walter Wingate's love of the countryside - and its solitude - comes through strongly in this short poem.

Country Quiet

Awa' aback o' Cathkin
   There lies a lanely lan';
Whaur a' the day the peesweeps murn
Owre narrow roads that dip and turn,
   An' never ken whaur they're gaun.

And when ye staun' a-swither
   Amang the fankled weys,
Ye'll maybe hear a quean ahin',
Bare-armed, red flustered clatterin'?
   "Heh! Will ye stop the queys?"

And ye may see the horses
   Come easy owre the brae:
And when the furrow nears the edge,
The ploughman, leanin' owre the hedge,
   May speer ye the time o' day.

In hour by hour o' rovin',
   Nae mair ye'll hear or see:
But after weeks o' crowd and steer
An afternoon o' the quateness here
   Is aye like a heaven to me!

Meaning of unusual words:
Cathkin=a hilly area, in southern Glasgow
peesweeps murn=lapwing murmuring
staun' a-swither=stand undecided, hesitatingly
fankled weys=twisted ways
quean ahin'=young female maidservant behind
queys=young heifer
speer ye=ask you

Return to the Index of Walter Wingate Poems or the General Index of Scottish Poetry

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