25 January 2007

Robert Burns Day

on burn’s day 1996
by Joe Blades

a canadian poet reads
at dumfries academy
200 years after rabbie
lived and died in this town

two canadian poets pose
in front of an art students
replica of rabbie’s tombstone
photographed as gargoyle thinkers
for the observer courier and herald

haggis pizza at doonhamer restaurant
honours rabbie burns’ bicentenary
and giovanni pascoli—a romantic
poet from the owner’s tuscan hometown

the people’s poet in every school
“my heart’s in the highlands”
recited in scots and russian
bagpipes and kilts and crazy
scots dancing in -20°C sun
in snow-cleared red square
afore dancing bears and belly dancers
at a moscow burn’s supper

robert burns scottish ale
flower of scotland whisky
robert burns sauvignon
the spirit of burns: a rare old blend
robert burns claret

and a red fox is struck
by a lorry or rover
to die on a road
out of dumfries

(Previously published in The Reader/Telegraph Journal, January 1997. © Joe Blades 1996.)
T-shirt: The Globe Inn (Established 1610) Burns' Howff
loc: Fredmemorylane
temp: -18°C (wind chill -25°C
sound: The Pogues Waiting for Herb

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