Strathcarron

Sundial

Let others tell of storms and of showers
I’ll only count your sunny hours

In spring and summer 2011 I ran several writing sessions with day-care patients at Strathcarron Hospice near Denny. We talked and wrote about places, objects, gardens, people, sharing and affirming memories, and opening new conversations about previously unsuspected things-in-common. Here’s a group poem –

A Strathcarron Lucky Bag

Sheena Easton, Larry Marshall,
Billy Bremner, Walter Scott,
Taggart, Wallace, Tom Mackay,
Mary Stuart and a’ yon lot

munch Selkirk bannocks, jeely pieces,
Atholl rasps and Cullen Skink,
haggis puddings, drop scones, crumpets,
a pint of IPA to drink

in Denny, Falkirk, River City,
Balquhidder, the Necropolis,
the Tryst Golf Club, Loch Fyne, Loch Tay,
at Mrs Anderson’s, Bo’ness –

and aye a jaunt to Kirriemuir,
I hear yon Camera Obscur–
a there is fairly worth a keek – but that
we’ll have to maybe leave till next week.

At the final session, last September, we read the work to other patients and hospice staff in the day-lounge. and I thought that was that, until this week a bundle of booklets arrived in the post.

Who We Are and What We Like

Who We Are and What We Like collects the poems and prose we wrote last week in a simple, 12-page, A5 booklet, thoughtfully and carefully crafted.

The photos below show some ‘Garden Haiku’ in the hospice grounds.

Hosta – food for snails

Coloured poppies / at lunch-time the school-kids / came to hear you pop

Rhododendrons / in springtime / in the gardens at Bidduph

If you’d like a copy of the booklet let me know, and I’ll post one out.

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4 thoughts on “Strathcarron”

  1. Hi Ken,

    What a wonderful project at Strathcarron! If you had a spare copy of Who We Are and What We Like for GSA Library, we’d love to add it to our collections so that our students can consult it. Best wishes.
    Duncan Chappell
    Librarian
    Glasgow School of Art
    167 Renfrew Street
    Glasgow G3 6RQ

  2. Hi Ken, Looks great! I’m looking forward to seeing the booklet and hearing more about how it went. I love the garden haiku too. Isn’t Strathcarron a special place? Elspeth xoxo

    1. Thanks, Elspeth. It is special. It will be green this summer, after all the rain. I hope at least in today’s sunshine it will be sit-out-in-able. Ken

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