About the Poem
About the poet
George Mackay Brown (1921-1996) was born in the remote Orkney Islands off the north coast of...
Therefore he no more troubled the pool of silence.
But put on mask and cloak,
Strung a guitar
And moved among the folk.
Dancing they cried,
'Ah, how our sober islands
Are gay again, since this blind lyrical tramp
Invaded the Fair!'
Under the last dead lamp
When all the dancers and masks had gone inside
His cold stare
Returned to its true task, interrogation of silence.
from Collected Poems (John Murray, 2005), by permission of Archie Bevan, Literary Executor for the Estate of George Mackay Brown. Recording from the private recordings of Archie Bevan, used with his permission.