Sunday, 14 August 2011

The Sunday Post


A. K. McLeod.

I went to the landscape I love best
and the man who was its meaning and added to it
met me at Ullapool.

The beautiful landscape was under snow
and was beautiful in a new way.

Next morning, the man who had greeted me
with the pleasure of pleasure
vomited blood
and died.

Crofters and fishermen and womenfolk, unable
to say any more, said
"It's a grand day, it's a beautiful day"

And I thought, "Yes it is."
And I thought of him lying there,
the dead centre of it all.

Norman MacCaig.
March 1976.

6 comments:

IndigoWrath said...

Hey Alistair! Good grief, downbeat, but very real. Thanks for posting this today. indigo

Bovey Belle said...

Hmmm. Don't know what to make of this (it's a bit like walking into a lamp-post as not what I was expecting). I will have to ponder a bit . . .

Nicky Parry said...

Not as uplifting as some of his others! But still some poetic beauty, naturally. Beautiful photo too!

Alistair said...

It's certainly a different feel even to those poems in memoriam to Hugh McDairmid that I've posted before.
He was deeply affected by the death of his friend Angus MacLeod and wrote a whole series of poems in response. He did the same when his wife became terminally ill later in life too and they all show an ability to use stark imagery and blunt language to reflect the impact these had on him.
As with all his work, he never fails to be absolutely honest no matter how painful it may be. Despite the pain he describes so well, he shows he sees incredible detail of human behaviout as well as the bigger picture of life having to carry on.

A difficult subject poignantly handled.

Thanks for the comment on the photo too Nicky.

dbs said...

It reminds me of the last line of Robert Frost's poem "Out, Out--"..."and they since they were not the one dead, turned to their affairs."

Alistair said...

dbs- sorry - I never returned the comment.

I'll need to look that one up. It's not one I know......

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