personal rebellion

Rebel Yell!

Govan born and Bred
And easily led!
Grown up in poverty, sharing a bed
Dogged school and played the fool
Being a rebel was cool!
Missed education but had a brain for a tool!
Decided early on to join the forces
In the midnight hour I cried, more, more, more
With a rebel yell I cried, more, more, more
Travelled the world but always missed home
Came out and was reborn
Rebel no more!

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Gone With The Whisky

He rattles with the whisky in between dreams and beyond. Continuity unbroken as he knocks back drams from the dawning chorus until the owl is in flight. In restless sleep his nightmares come. I do not catch a single wink myself for fear of him drowning in seas of his own vomit. He rambles incoherently in broken sentences while I gently shush him back into the land of nod. Alcohol engorged neural pathways fire spasmodic messages to his limbs. His fists clench; his legs kick. I am covered in accidental bruises, and here and there a wee cut or nick.

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Night, night, sleep tight

Dinnae let the bedbugs bite

Jist squeeze em tight

An’ they’ll no bite anither night

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Forced Adoption

The Church of England and the Catholic Church have for a long time past meddled in the lives of young women who have got pregnant outside of marriage. They never took the feelings of the young women into account they just said it was morally wrong to have a child outside of wedlock. They have lost most of the records that say who the mothers are, so it is almost impossible for people from 1940’s and 1950’s to find their birth mothers records.

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Làmh ri Glèidheadh / Hand to Hold

Làmh ri Glèidheadh

Tha cuimhne leam an là
chum thu mo làmh na do làimh-s’,
’s sinn air coiseachd an àrd-shràid
bhon fhlat agam dhan bhaile.

Thuirt thu air an là sin: “’S dòch’
gur sinn an fheadhainn neartmhor,
oir ma chì ògannach gèidh sinn,
chì e gu bheil e ceart gu leòr.”

“OK”, ars mise, dòchasach,
gun cumadh tu i an comhnaidh,
ach cha do chum thu riamh a-rithist i,
is chum thu do làmhan-sa nad phoca.

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Peter In Limbo

Peter was getting more and more agitated. He was desperate to speak. But, you couldn’t contradict a priest; especially not a parish priest! Peter lowered his head and took a few deep breaths.

“Here! Have you been listening to a single word I’ve been saying?” Father Kerr’s eyes seemed to bore straight through him.

Mr. O’Brien was surprised by the way the priest reacted.

"Me, Father?” Peter tried to keep the fear out of his voice. He grabbed hold of the desk seat with both hands, pressing down, trying to control his shaking.

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The water.
Dark before me, cold - that crushing, heartstopping chill -
The ice-laced memory of youth, ebb and flow there, in North Sea waves.
A rebellion now: this body, its’ years of life - of life-giving and life-living - marked across the skin;
stretched scars of joy, of tears, of memories - the sag of days passing; wrinkles etching recollection.
Yes, a rebellion then, to pull on this neoprene suit
its’ inky thickness wrapping this aging self of mine, warming these bones which now feel the ache of years in their joints,

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Words are easy. Words are cheap. When people say where did you get the idea for your book, words are what they want, and words themselves have nothing to do with why I write. Because I’m not really a writer. What I am, is a reader. That’s me. Curled up somewhere so deep inside a story that it’s more real than the real world. If it’s night time in that story I’ll look up confused at the sunshine coming through the window. Daydreamer. Fool. And when I sit down to write a book it’s not some grand idea - it’s because I want to read that book and I know nobody is going to write it except me.

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You and I and the Sea

I swim into endless colour
and leave you
far behind

laughing all the while
at quaint and
distant shores
at helpless
empty skies

I laugh until
my lungs fill
with water
and you part the waves
stepping forth to
carry me to shore

holding me close
as I shiver
and splutter


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personal rebellion

Thelma and Louise, Bitch

Thelma and Louise, Bitch
By Anna Stewart

How me and mum came tae be livin it up on the Forfar Road is a pure massive saga. So I'm just gonnae tell yi the best bit: the end.

We were visitin Edinburgh fae Dundee, stayin at my Great-Auntie's flat on the other side o The Meadows. It wis a summer night and we were walkin back fae toon through the line o trees cawed Jawbone Walk, and that's when my Mum's husband put his hand up my skirt, right in front o her.

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