On their watery heads

I have recently become obsessed with the free verse poetry of Norman MacCaig.  It would be a marvellous and impossible preoccupation to ‘illustrate’ his works; I don’t think he would have approved.  This is my first attempt but expect more.

An extract from his poem Small Lochs:

I know they’re just H2O in a hollow
Yet not much time passes without me thinking of them
Dandling lilies and talking sleepily
And standing huge mountains on their watery heads

This is Loch Long near Dornie and as the name implies, not the small loch which MacCaig has in mind, nevertheless, it does serve to illustrate the last line (click on the image to see the enlarged view).

Watery heads


  1. Mary Gilmartin · January 25, 2013

    You posting reminds me of a book written by a local author, Brian Jay Corrigan, “The Poet of Loch Ness.” I read my copy of his autographed book three years ago and believe it was set in Scotland around the Lochs. Here’a a link if you want to read the Prelude to the book on Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Poet-Loch-Ness-Brian-Corrigan/dp/0312329318#_

  2. sarahmonagle · January 26, 2013

    beautiful photo!

  3. Chris Martin · August 8, 2018

    You should read At the Loch of the Corrie of the Green Waterfall by Andrew Greig. I think MacCaig would prefer a picture of a smaller loch, perhaps one in Assynt.

    • northumbrianlight · August 8, 2018

      I think you are right – a very perceptive comment Chris. I am also a fan of Andrew Greig and have already read At the Loch of the Green Corrie. Being a golfer, my favourite book of his is Preferred Lies which inspired me to write Golf in the Wild http://www.golfinthewild.co.uk. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment – it’s not the time that has passed since I wrote that post so much as the surprise that I wrote it at all – so much stuff I have completely forgotten about.

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