Every Road (University of Stirling)

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Wherever I go

Wherever I walk,

every road that I wander

will lead me back to you.

For my footsteps are printed

in the grass by the hill,

and the loch’s stole an inch

of my tears,

And my smile is still etched

in the curve of the bridge,

and my heart in the grey stony

brick.

See my words still whistle

in the trees and the reed

and my fingerprints curl

in each book,

And my time never ended

with a tap on the head,

with a robe a scroll or a nod and a look.

Wherever I go

and wherever I walk,

every road that I wander

will lead me back to you.

©Eilidh G Clark

Deadline

Time is running like the River Forth

and it is flowing down my spine.

Big Ben is printed on the back of my eyelids

And my heart is beating

Tick, tick, tick, tock.

Time is painted in the Stirling sky

and is burning holes

into the big fat orange moon, beating on me,

Beating like my pulse

Tick, tick, tick, tock

Time is flapping in the wind

And punching kisses on my chest.

White breath coughs from behind my teeth,

Chattering like supermarket baskets.

Tick, tick, tick, clatter.

Time is waiting on the bus,

Its holding a student pass outright

and the driver is checking his watch, shaking his head

Like a pendulum

Tick, tick, tick, bong

Time is passing by the window,

In the old ladies rain mate,

and it’s trapped in the spokes of an inside out brolly

and it’s pouring

Drip, tick, tock, drip

Time has landing on my face

From a charcoal dusk and

Airborne tear shapes that slap my skin

and roll

Tick, tick, drip, drip onto my essay.

Published in Brig Newspaper – University of Stirling

©Eilidh G Clark

The Lesson

Our heaving lungs suck the air as we climb.

Higher, higher.

Aching legs and numb feet scramble over boulders and broken branches.

Rain, wind, and a glimmer of sun. A distant mist descending

from the sullen sky onto the earth, erasing a castle, a monument

a city.

Leaves shake violently in the cutting wind. Noise.

Squelching mud, snapping twigs,

unnatural sound, we create it.

On the cliff top, the landscape is our canvas.

Acorns and chestnuts, branches and stones, litter the floor

like a countryside collage  hung on a  classroom wall. Winters decay.

Carcasses of cream coloured leaves, consumed by insects, lie randomly

forming delicate lace arrangements.

Brown mud, brown leaves, brown bark, paint the backdrop

of a multi coloured woodland.

Green moss on a broken wall,

orange, yellow and grey foliage A tiny shoot, pushes through the earth.

Layers of  life on death, death on life. The liberty of nature.

Nature is shrinking, the colours rinsed out by

buildings, roads, litter, wire fences

hemming in the farmers cows

hemming in history.

Humanity’s smell is pungent,

food and  people

people and food.

Through the wind, a distant drilling is heard.

©Eilidh G Clark

Scroll

It is midnight.
And the stroke of its hand is a memory;
A memory of
a hand that once held mine.
I am entangled in darkness

The hiss of a serpent wraps around
my throat,
until my nicotine breath bellows
And drops.

Amongst the shadows,
Optimism shines like a ghost
from an invisible moon.

I am calm.

Déjà vu haunts me
and I realise my footsteps

may have, walked this place before when I was young.

And my future.

You made me. You

and a bald headed man
who is and is not my father.
You gave me this midnight, and you are gone.
Sadness lives in me like tumour
but sadness pays.

Soon

I will hold a scroll to say
Be proud mum, I did it.

©Eilidh G Clark