A Poem by Penulis Kecil

Sitting at my desk as night turned into day here in Glasgow, so far from home, this one just happened. Caitriona is the Scottish Gaelic form of (French) Catherine, which means Pure.


I slide the blind up and your city breathes

below me, her daytime coat

(the steel and grit and human leavings)

hidden, she calls through the glass;

steeped in history, her glory is foreign

and familiar; a dichotomy built

on racial memory and fairy stories.


This land knows my feet as those of family

long gone; rejects and welcomes me

in equal measure and her peoples

live a thousand lives untold before me

like mine, at home. And here,

a car sweeps past, lights like arms

reach out and push, push, push,

until the velvet curtain slides away.


Somewhere, behind the glass, you,

I know, are out there; probably

you are lying awake, and you are there

beside a man who doesn't know how to love

without destroying: he is King Edward,

an empty coat reigning over your Scotland.


And through the miles I carry with me,

I speak to you in words you cannot hear

because you are out there awake at 4am,

and probably you haven't slept yet:

I can be your William Wallace,

I can sacrifice myself but I cannot save you.


Here in the quiet, the gulls cry for you: pick up your sword, Braveheart,

history can be remade. in this battle, the world has your back.

© 2011 Penulis Kecil

Author's Note

Penulis Kecil
All polite/relevant reviews are welcome - including constructive critique, grammar and spelling corrections. And thank you for reading/leaving a review!

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I read this poem twice to soak up all the goodness of it- I love when a poem makes me revisit and re-read itself. I really felt the history, the longing for love, the loneliness, the waiting, etc. The poem also had an effortless flow which a lot of people struggle with, nothing was forced. All in all, I really enjoyed this- keep up the great writing

Posted 8 Years Ago

Penulis Kecil

8 Years Ago

Thank you. :) I'm glad you enjoyed it!
I loved the free-floeing structure :) the way you described the scene and worded the last few lines really touched me. The imagery was fabulous, and really moving. I loved the line 'history can be remade. in battle, the world has your back'. It's really interesting. Overall, I found this new, refreshing and above all really meaningful. Great job :)

Posted 9 Years Ago

yes...a true William Wallace ..sacrifice.. recognizing,, but all in good consciousness.. of the effort required to have a backing ...

Posted 9 Years Ago

I just love the way this poem speaks across time and distance, equating them, relating all that history, and its generations with their shared roots, to the here and now. But also how it speaks to someone specifically... in the manner of calling out; a battle cry full of courage... across the distance the poem narrates. Always... your poems are so wonderful to read.

Posted 9 Years Ago

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5 Reviews
Shelved in 3 Libraries
Added on June 30, 2011
Last Updated on July 19, 2011
Tags: history, domestic violence, travel, city, Glasgow, Scotland


Penulis Kecil
Penulis Kecil

Caboolture, Australia

I'm a 29 year old Australian woman who has, like most people, experienced a number of things in life. I think I'm pretty friendly, if a little odd and silly. When I'm not writing, I enjoy other cre.. more..