Women’s Poetry Day……


As you may have guessed already, this Blog has nothing to do with Running, Photography or Nutrition but with World Poetry Day.

Held every year on 21 March, World Poetry Day celebrates one of humanity’s most treasured forms of cultural and linguistic expression and identity. Practiced throughout history – in every culture and on every continent – poetry speaks to our common humanity and our shared values, transforming the simplest of poems into a powerful catalyst for dialogue and peace.

Coming from Ayrshire, it is perhaps not surprising that I like my poetry and have, on occasion, been known to scribe a few words of my own.  However that may be for another day.  Today I want to celebrate, something that we never covered in school, female Scottish Poets.

Whilst walking through Queen’s Park, I often take the time to visit the Scottish Poetry Rose Garden which was created in 2003. The Garden commemorates twelve Scottish poets, including two females: Violet Jacob (1863-1946) and Marion Angus (1865 -1946).  You can learn more about these and other poets at the Scottish Poetry Library but, for now, I’ll let their words do the talking:

violet Jacob

Violet Jacob

Tam i’ the Kirk

O Jean, my Jean, when the bell ca’s the congregation
Owre valley an’ hill wi’ the ding frae its iron mou’,
When a’body’s thochts is set on his ain salvation,
    Mine’s set on you.

There’s a reid rose lies on the Buik o’ the Word 'afore ye
That was growin’ braw on its bush at the keek o’ day,
But the lad that pu’d yon flower i’ the mornin’s glory, 
    He canna pray.

He canna pray; but there’s nane i’ the kirk will heed him
Whaur he sits sae still his lane at the side o’ the wa’,
For nane but the reid rose kens what my lassie gied him –
    It an' us twa!

He canna sing for the sang that his ain he’rt raises,
He canna see for the mist that’s afore his e’en,
And a voice drouns the hale o’ the psalms an’ the paraphrases,
    Cryin' ‘Jean! Jean! Jean!’


The Blue Jacket

When there comes a flower to the stingless nettle,
To the hazel bushes, bees,
I think I can see my little sister
Rocking herself by the hazel trees.

Rocking her arms for very pleasure
That every leaf so sweet can smell,
And that she has on her the warm blue jacket
Of mine, she liked so well.

Oh to win near you, little sister!
To hear your soft lips say –
‘I’ll never tak’ up wi’ lads or lovers,
But a baby I maun hae.

‘A baby in a cradle rocking,
Like a nut, in a hazel shell,
And a new blue jacket, like this o’ Annie’s,
It sets me aye sae well.’



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