Annie Watson Poems


28 The Eden Estuary


29 The Auld Men's Hut



At the turn of the tide, as the river meets the sea

The estuary is unveiled

An empty canvas awaits the painter’s palette

Oyster catchers in local dialect cleekum sparrows

The splendid black and white legs encased in orange stockings

Feed on choice morsels, cockles, mussels, limpets, shrimps and crabs

Curlews, in Scotland called whaups, with their curved beaks

Scour the shoreline for their share of tasty treats

Lugworms leave their telltale casts in the sand

Starfish with tentacles outspread like a baby’s hand

In the sea water close to the shore rafts of eider

St Cuthbert’s chickens, bob up and down in the rippling waves

And croon softly one to another

Relentlessly the incoming tide covers the shore

And the painter’s sandscape is erased once more


Oh weel ah mind o the auld men’s hut

On a cauld wintry day when the door wis shut

We liftit oor pipes an smokit oor fags

Wi nae wives tae blatter us wi their nag nag nags

We’d hae a read o the paper and get aa the news

Syne we’d talk aboot them an gie our ain views

At the back o twelve we’d gang hame for wir meat

A helpin o mince an tatties wis hard tae beat

The poet and her husband are resident in one of the care homes. I was captivated by her writing and by her own delivery of her work in the Doric. Annie writes about many things and she was happy to contribute to the project. We are delighted.

Christine Kydd

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