Category Archives: Youth

Mc Illwain, the Celebrated?

“Poetic Bloomings”, the shared poetry blog of Marie Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, has honoured me with their selection as the Web Wednesday Interview on this day. In it, Marie Elena and I discussed the poetic process, bagpipe music, Robert Burns and Mother Scotland, among other topics. I would be fully appreciative if you would give this piece a view. Thank you again to Marie Elena Good and Walt Wojtanik, as well as all the contributors for their support and encouragement.


Teach Your Children


This code that we must live by,
to be true to ourselves,
to live with compassion
and fill this life with passion
for the things we do that make us
vibrant and vital; this tidal wave
that will save our souls. An S.O.S.
to all alerted. We will not be swayed;
not be diverted from our charge.
It is a large order to fill. but
if we instill these qualities
into our progeny, they will be
on the road to a proud humanity.
The world’s sanity will be dependant
on their survival. Await their arrival,
it will be a grand parade! Crack the code.
Teach your children well.




**Written for Poetic Asides “School” prompt and conforming to Poetic Blooming’s “Song Lyric” prod

Daughters and Exes

Daughters bring joy.
And any boy who dreams,
yea, even schemes to abscond
with my darling lassies
had better love and care
for their needs and welfare.
They deserve no less, the best
life could offer in petite packages,
the ageless continuance of my being.
Long after I’m gone, I will find life
in a grandson’s smile, I will delight
in a granddaughter’s wile; she will hold the cards.
It is hard to imagine their mother
in their genetics. No frenetic rant
comes forth from within;
it would be a sin otherwise.
The spectrum spans wide,
and I can not hide my exuberance
at their contrary existence.
Da loves his girls.
My ex? Not so much.



Mum’s House

The birth of me blessed this place,
but all traces of existence have vacated.
A noble home; a country cottage kept
amidst the hills and briars with room
to grow and learn. The stoop unswept
and remnants of window hangings clinging
steadfastly to the narrow rod, t’were hung.
Songs that mother had sung for father’s joy,
or to her infant boy, linger amongst the cobwebs.
In my possession, but no heart for disposition.
Dreams of restoration to her former glory
have long since vapourized as eyes mist
and a wisp of her spirit fills me.
Once a beauty as was mother, but now
the only remnant of her who gave life
to this sad and rampant storyteller.
This fellow knows all that filled this place
now fills my heart to overflowing,
always knowing mum’s house was home.




Uncle Angus Hummed

A made-up melody,
random notes from the back
of his throat. Uncle
didn’t bother with words
when the beauty of a song
lived in his heart. Many nights
on the lough we waited
with baited hooks and star-filled
skies. Angus closed his eyes
and his lips to begin
this hot air symphony all his own.
Old folk songs taught by his
GrandDa keeping the fish at bay,
and drawing me closer to the ancients;
descendents and ancestors alike.
Songs that dance in the shadows of my memory.
My times with Angus were laced with love.



Emmaline’s Sigh

Hands joined as we trek
across the lea to our quiet place.
Her face rings of porcelain, possessing
a heart made of same. Its beat
is strong and rapid, as mine
responds in kind; breathing heated
and shallow, hands trembling, but sure.
It is a fine Aberdeen eve,
with Emmaline as companion.
From the marsh the sound
of a reptilian rendezvous
punctuates the star filled night.
Dare I stop to steal a kiss,
from the fairness of one who owns
every loving thought of mine?
Dare I do, a kiss, then two;
love’s treasure sating my longing soul.
Rapt in the embrace of emerging emotions,
Emmaline replies not. Her only music
is a pulsing heart and her sensuous sigh.
She and I, nigh in the night.


Pennies and Pence (Posted elsewhere as “Nickles and Dimes”)

A tyke in the candy shop,
one stop to nirvana.
Pockets and purses of pennies and pence
displaced by gums and toffees,
jellies and chocolate.
Rainy day savings of the lads
and wee bonnie lassies,
porcelain pigs gutted
left starved save for the
sweet confections savored.
But at days end, the sour stomach
retches and fetches those treats
and sends them replete to the basin.
Pennies and Pence flushing the drain!

~ I had posted this piece on the Poetic Asides site as “Nickles and Dimes”. It appears to be a majorly North American influence (my time spent in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada, not withstanding). The pennies and pence refer to my years of youth between Glasgow-Edinburgh.