Read introduction

Poem about the grim, savage beauty of a Scottish moor and feeling depressed there - which at first seems a 'match', but eventually the particular, rough, utterly wild beauty, and the enduring nature of this landscape, acts a tough cure.

Gorse and Broom on the Moor

Gillian_ferguson_photo_high_resby Gillian K Ferguson02 Oct 2013

A Pibroch of wind piping the brutal moor.
The souls of everything fled.

The depressed moor recognises his own voice.
The feeling of being a moor.

In this grim, elemental music,
using his struggling body like an instrument.
Excavating cut peat wounds. Singing through black bog mouths,
primaeval dark psalms; treacherous laments for the drowned -
playing the tuned holes of their everlasting whisky-gold skulls.

The moor misses one supplicant tree, horizontal as river weed -now a sprawl of silver bones, like the remains of a crippled animal.
Loves, even, an inconsolable sheep still bleating for her eaten lamb
in rended rags of frost-purled wool.
Soaks her with gory light, rusts her to munching Argonaut gold;
posts shining fire through the demonic slits of her beatific eyes,
igniting evening’s orange petroleum pools,
methylated violet lochans.

A cuthroat sky is hung bleeding, pole to pole.
Losing blood until a dead grey kill: bled.
Carried in slow march to the darkening camp of night.

Sleet salts air’s rough tongue.
Mountains, scoured to the very skull,
cry scree.

My stumbling ankles choke: purple heather garrottes.
Stump hands guddle Glenmorangie burns for fish.
Breathless brown trout suspended - swamp spawn;
evolution paused in foil eyes which saw dinosaurs.
Find only double-crossing glitter: Fool’s Gold.

A curlew is me.

Until psychologists of gorse flicker
sputtering yellow flames on frosted star-thorns.
Acid candles of nursing broom
burn smouldering holes in bluing airskin -
scarring resilient haloes.
A mad psychiatrist Moonskull looms.

Golden Eagle doctor wheels from the ether
in an ambulance of light.

Lighting the great cathedral of here:
my dark heart church.