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Hibiscus reids an maavs hing aboot
as I sup my vino tinto an waatch
the steer o' fowk gang bye.
He raxes ower an taks my haun.
Ess is braw, intit? he says.
Aye, says I, an shut my een.

She's ere, stannin in the close,
yabblin awa tae the hens, in her
saft Doric tongue. Crack an claik
fae Bogheid an sic like foreign pairts,
tummel oot wi tattie pairins
an bruis'd corn.

A hallyrackit quine o twal,
fin her hale femly sailed awa
tae Illinois, she reneged an bade,
the auldest o her eleeven geets
loast at Ypres, afore my faither,
the shakins o the poke, wis born.

Fa div ye ken in Spain? she'd speir,
nivver further than she cwid traivel.
Reid-het pokers pynt at a brichtnin sky
an the sun guddles in her droonin burn.
I canna win awa; it's far I'm fae.
It's fa I am, an far I wint tae be.

Eleanor Fordyce

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