Be good to
gab again
down on the pier
You could ride old Fergi
through the slurry mist
that spreads like
cotton sheets
tucking the headland in
curling white
lazy fog
If we’re spared

You could tell me
more of the island
Fertile tended rock
pleated green rolling ridges
thick white tufts of
lolling sheep
plods of well fed cows
pretty careless ponies
your walled and tended
Island garden
If we’re spared

I could share my bit
How years of
building piers
and fishing
half a world away
has shaped another
Island life
with sand and sun
instead of rough
grey rock
If we’re spared

Today we stand
and lean close in
Squinting through bits
of spitting rain
Tilted on our
well worn hips
and creaky knees
Years of bending
getting up
to tractor
to crane
from boats
through salty mists
Cold Scottish and
New England wet winters
If we’re spared

I can see the drive
the spark still
in your tufted shaded eyes
as we both bite
the ending bit
of it
I send blessings
to your family
from our own
a world away
and may we talk again
If we’re spared

— For Lawrence and all the MacEwens on The Isle of Muck. Thanks for your generous hospitality during our 24 hours on your very special island. We will be back. If we’re spared.
     Steve and Claudia Ewing