View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Thursday 1 November

A cold day, in spite of the 8C / 46F on the thermometer, the bitterness being caused by a strong easterly breeze. It grew even less pleasant when we lost the sun in the afternoon to showers. I was glad to have taken the woolly hat and gloves out, even for the short walk to the shop and into town. Was that haircut such a good idea? Nggg, that hair in my face was driving me batchy.

Western Isles Council has put proposals out for consultation that would result in service cuts amounting to £5.7 million. The details of the proposals are breathtaking; I had a look at a six-page document outlining them all, and it is absolutely horrendous. It begs the question what we have a council for if it isn't doing anything for the local people anymore. OK, that's an overreaction, but it is very bad news.


Village by the sand
hiding the ninety-one
pieces carved from ivory
brought in from across the sea

Men from the north
left them for us to guess
their play with the future
after they had gone from these shores

Leaving behind only names
for the villages along the shores
the hills, bays and inlets
no further trace was left

Except the ninety-one
in the sand by the village
along the bay that named a whole district
Were they chessmen?