Advance and Retire
There’s a figure in Scottish Country dancing (English and Irish too, for that matter) called advance and retire. You start a great many dances by dancing forward four steps and back four steps. So this year has gone. It’s not just the weather, frost one morning
and seed sowing and birds marking out nesting territories the next
but the poetry too.
Just as new and exciting ideas put out little tendrils, like the witch hazel flowers, something comes along that knocks it all back again. But this week saw the start of something that I hope will really last. The online magazine of the Scottish Centre for Geopoetics, Stravaig has come out. It has two of my poems in it, but more excitingly, it has (among a lot of very fine stuff), poems from Susan Richardson, essays from Gordon Peters and Mohammed Hashas, poems and images from Nat Hall, and a film Abachen from Alastair Cook. This is greatly to the credit of the editor, Norman Bissell, whose hard work over many years brought together the inspiring mix of talents and opportunities that made it all possible. I hope you like it!