Poetry

Leaving the Island

Leaving the Island   The day windless and pale; The hills rubbed out with mist. Donald Angus leaves a note in English on the mantel, Each word chiselled slow and beautiful in ink. The dogs drowned obedient in the bay; The men come wordless back, the hands at their sides hurt. They help the eldest down the long steps; She murmurs Gaelic, soft sounds that make no longer any sense. They go onto the ship, their blue eyes flickering about them— Out on the water, the psalm lifts—a great and rising wave.   A mainland that was out of sight…

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