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Heading North

August 30, 2016

On Friday, Maureen and I will be heading north for the Callander Poetry Weekend 2016 hosted by Sally Evans and her husband Ian at King’s Bookshop in this gorgeous Scottish town, “the Gateway to the Highlands” as known. It will be my second time at this annual event and I’m much looking forward to it after the wonderful time we had there last year (see my post of 13/09/15).

Maureen will play harmonica between her poems and I’m sure she’ll go down a storm as always.

My poems will all be from my first collection, Twin Dakotas: poetry and prose, and will include one from 40-odd years ago, when I began pounding the keyboard in earnest. Having no contacts in the poetry world back then and no knowledge of the small press magazines where my work might have stood a chance, I aimed too high with the inevitable result – rejection after rejection.  These days, thanks to Maureen bringing me out, I’m in an altogether better place, but maybe my early poem will chime in with a few others at Callander.  Here it is:




A loner –

porcelain eyes, as if on wires,

guide his floating face

above the concourse

as he hacks his way


through the jungles of his mind,

his talent his machete.


Soon –

a clearing opens before him

and there is the crowd.

But what will they care

for his poem?


Paul Beech


Copyright © Paul Beech 2016

  1. You have captured my feelings as a writer to a tee, although I do not write much poetry my stories are my jungle. I always have hope that I will come to that clearing one day. :o)

    I know you and Maureen have a successful and wonderful time in Scotland. Wishing you both all the best and a safe trip. Enjoy!!!!



    • Thanks Pat, I love your stories with their golden afterglow and hope you’ll put together a collection soon.

      Yes, Scotland here we come, beautiful Scotland – and enjoy ourselves we will!

      My very best,


  2. Have a wonderful and successful trip to Scotland Paul – you’re work will be welcomed with open arms. A lovely poem that I can relate too in my own artistic way.

    • Thanks Mary, we’re looking forward to it very much and doing rehearsals now. There’ll be book stalls in the Kirk Hall on Saturday and I hope to sell a few copies of ‘Twin Dakotas’. Maureen will sell her books too.

      My very best,


  3. I think any young artist can relate to this poem, Paul, as we’ve all been there. I envy your travel to “the gateway to the Highlands.” Here’s wishing you a beautiful trip and a heart-warming experience…

    • Thanks Cynthia. Yes, I hope young artists will relate to my poem, and the not-so-young too, those who’ve spent decades trying to break out. I’ve managed it now, thanks to my precious Maureen, and how good it feels! My advice to those talented ones awaiting a break: Don’t despair. Believe in yourself and keep going, keep going, keep going.

      Aye, we’ll be singing in our hearts, Maureen and I, on Friday, as we cross the border into bonny Scotland.

      Best wishes always,


  4. maureen Weldon permalink

    Yes Scotland is indeed getting very near, and the Poetry Scotland Callander Poetry Festival Weekend, how wonderful it is now to share it with you Paul my love.
    from, your Maureen xxx

    • Maureen, my love, Callander cannot but be amazing with poets of such brilliant and varied talent for company. But as always, every day, the magic for me will reside in sharing it all with you.

      Joyously, your Paul xxx

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