Friday, August 31, 2012

Night Piper

Photo ©Ewan McIntosh
Into a random dream, only half-remembered,
dances the noise of -
God, it’s pipes! And it’s
three am and I’ve been sleeping but
I leap from my bed and look 
out and there they are: a man, 
pipes shouldered, marching along
the sleeping crescent playing 
his heart out. And it’s not just the old
Scotland the Brave stuff but
an intricate shifting pattern of notes
and he’s good, good, but
far too loud for my wincing brain.
In front of this marching kilt 
five figures dance
yes, dance,
keeping time as they
make their way past the
dark houses which seem
like me not to have welcomed them
with lights, but they don’t care.
Light on their feet and lightly
rhythmic they pass on and the music sounds
more and more distant as the night 
folds back and sleep floods over
the vacant echoes of the town.


This happened on the only weekend of the year when such things are, in fact, normal - Cowal Games weekend. The poem actually suggested itself to me as I was drifting back to sleep, but I've taken almost a week to get round to putting it down.

1 comment: said...

This is an absolutely lovely poem! I can also hear a play of a night piper through your description.