George Square

My seventy seven year old father
Put his reading glasses on
To help my mother do the buttons
On the back of her dress.
'What a pair the two of us are!'
my mother said, 'Me with my sore wrist,
you with your bad eyes, your soft thumbs!'

And off they went, my two parents
To march against the war in Iraq,
Him with his plastic hips, her with her arthritis
To congregate at George Square where the banners
Waved at each other like old friends, flapping,
Where'd they'd met for so many marches over their years,
For peace on earth, for pity's sake, for peace, for peace.

From Life Mask (Bloodaxe, 2005), copyright © Jackie Kay 2005, used by permission of the author and Bloodaxe Books Ltd.

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1The Waiting Lists

2Baby Lazarus

3The Tweed Hat Dream

4Brendon Gallacher

5Old Tongue

6My Grandmother

7In My Country

8In the Pullman

9The Red Graveyard

10Somebody Else



13Late Love

14Glen Strathfarrar

15The Spare Room

16There's Trouble for Maw Broon




20Gone With the Wind



23Things Fall Apart

24A White African Dress


26George Square

27The Shoes of Dead Comrades

28I Kin See Richt Thru My Mither

29High Land

30Old Aberdeen

31Dream Pier



34Moon Mask

35Life Mask

Books by Jackie Kay