The New McGonagall 2 with new poems now

ODE TO THE DISCARDING OF UPPER BODY GARMENTS BY MEN

You know that it’s real fine weather in Dundee when they go naked

To the waist, the young men. Maybe they refuse to fake it

With sun-bed tanning but want the sun to bronze their bodies;

Or maybe they are happy to expose their physique like Gods, yes,

Or Greek heroes, even although, being Scots, they’re a bit skinnier

Than those, but tasty enough to tempt the girls judge who’s a winner.

This lady is fifty but her tongue between her lips shows what

She’s thinking while she looks at the lads on the scaffold caught

By a shaft of sunlight, muscles flexing, and hears them say

To all and sundry,”Taps aff! Taps aff! It’s a taps aff day!”

 

Then I’ve seen in Madrid, sophisticated city, in the Puerta del Sol

Where elegant business women in striped suits and high heels stroll,

A noisy troop of football supporters, half- naked, all ages,

Dances past Philip the Third, who remains unimpressed, while it assuages

Its thirst from bottles of San Miguel. Later their team is playing Atlético

But now they are everybody’s friend, they come in peace, and show

It by offering to share their drink with passersby, begging locals

Of both genders to dance with them.  A young woman joins these yokels

Extemporising a flamenco while they clap and call and sway

Ecstatically, “Taps aff! Taps aff! It’s a Taps aff day.”

 

When the Lord decides to blow that horn and rouse the dead to glory

When the oppressors’ mouths are shut and the oppressed can tell their story

When the poor will dine off golden plates and the rich will fry in hell

True justice will be established and all things shall be well.

Sinful saints of all religions and of none will laugh at being there

Where Jesus and Mohammed with Buddha and Confucius share

Perpetual joy and light. And if the gates of heaven are wide enough

For me to sneak in too, I’ll be disappointed if I do not see buff

Lads from all the nations who’ve learned from ours to say

“Taps aff! Taps aff angels! It’s a Taps aff day.”

 

 

ODE TO SUNSET

The clouds are grey above a pale gold strip of sunlight

This spring dusk at Ardmair Bay, the glow mirrored on the quiet

Water. It’s been a day of rain and shine, now ending with the promise

Of fine weather tomorrow. As I watch, the sky fades from this

Shade to something more like white, as the day ebbs. But look out!

As the sun descends out of clouds there’s a sudden shout

Of yellowness that echoes around the bay and sends its arrow

Across the ripples. Fire dances on the horizon and upon the narrow

Headland of the promontory as the  Summer Isles in silhouette

Blacken. Now the sun bleeds slowly into the sea and sets,

Its glory making the grey clouds and the still bay red.

The earth is hushed and shining, the day dead.

ODE TO SMIRR

I always liked it. As a boy, walking down Bothwell Street to Central

Station I felt it wipe my face clean while others went mental

Putting up hoods or brollies. Not bothered by being damp I welcomed

Its gentle persistence. When I watched Third Lanark it gummed

My hair to my head but didn’t spoil my view of Jimmy Mason

Sliding the ball to the winger. You could see its evaporation

From caps and jackets when the sun came out. Mind you

I didn’t wear specs then. Now that I do, I know it’s a bind you

Can only solve if you carry a cloth to wipe them, which I never

Have. Last week on the hill I felt it fall light as a feather

Over summit, corrie, ridge and shoulder, softening their contours

But not erasing them, so that I could move inside it with a sure

Sense of direction, washed and wakened by the cool water;

A secular grace granted by this small rain called smirr.

ODE TO SCOTTISH HOTELS

 

They have their own language: THIS HISTORICAL BUILDING IS

THE PERFECT COMBINATION OF VICTORIAN SOLIDNESS

AND MODERN INSPIRED STYLE ( tacky tart-up of property

Unfortunately protected by law) YOUR ADVENTURE STARTS HERE (we

May get out alive) BREATHE THE REFRESHING SEA AIR (or die).

YOUR ROOM IS YOUR SANCTUARY WHERE YOU MAY LIE

BACK (and count the orgasms next door) CONTEMPORARY DESIGN

WITH A NOD TO TRADITION (almost impossible to align

Your body and the mirror but there is a bed.) UNINHIBITED

VIEWS WITH LARGE BATHROOMS (say no more). EACH FITTED

WITH DIFFERENT EXTRAS (from remaindered stock) SEEP

INTO THE RICH CARPET (so that’s the strange smell) RELAX AND SLEEP

THE BEST SLEEP OF YOUR LIFE (or listen to the argument in the street;

My wife asks, are these Gaelic words?)  VISIT THE MADONNA LOUNGE BAR

WHERE WE OFFER A CURATED SELECTION OF WINES BEERS AND SPIRITS (Rrrr

You idiot, allow me to give you a curated selection of Scots words for fool,

You eejit, bampot, numptie, you roaster, nugget, bawheid, tool,

Who do you imagine is reading this nonsense? Little Miss Muffet

Or Little Lord Fauntleroy? Sensible people will tell you  to sit on your tuffet

While the lassie on reception (whose pay is a tenth of yours) gives them the gen

About the hotel. “It’s no bad and the beds are comfy with a couple of Nurofen”

“The food is good but the Maitre D is away wi’ the goalie” “If you want to tip

Someone put the cash in their hand.” They book her hotel for their trip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s