Orkney Islands

Peace – Land

Reflection - remembrance - response A hundred winters have passed since the internment of the German High Seas Fleet in Scapa Flow. Agreement over the fate of the Fleet would ultimately never be reached, forestalled by the dramatic acts of its officers and crew in June 1919. These verses reflect upon time spent waiting for [...]Read more of Peace – Land...

The Tern

The Tern, Gabrielle Barnby, Julia McGhee, National Theatre Scotland, One Day to Play, poetry, dance, birds, tern.
One Day to Play For one day National Theatre Scotland teamed up with the Orkney Folk Festival to bring together different artists and give them a chance to work together. It was a privilege to be partnered with dance artist Julia McGhee (twitter @McGheeJulia) who transformed my words into movement and gave a brilliant performance [...]Read more of The Tern...

A Countrywoman’s Diary

A Countrywoman’s Diary Bessie Skea The richness and timelessness of Skea’s prose draws the reader into the Orcadian landscape, gently lifting the veil of seeing out of habit rather than looking from their eyes. Bessie takes the reader through the seasons with joy, with humour and with an eye that is determined in the act […]

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ASLE talk

People, poems and place: Stromness an acrostic town. Gabrielle Barnby ASLE conference, 5-7th Sept, Orkney   ‘There is no skill or enchantment To make the old coat green, There can be at best, now A flung or fated pattern of patches’ Excerpt from An Old Man in July by George Mackay Brown, Northern Lights (1999)   […]

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Wonderlust

Wonderlust   Earth shell spirals galaxy on wet mornings; caution busy feet, move slow so grounded gaze can pick out delicate round snailings from angular gravel spat by road; leaving the clover and dock and vetch of safety, drawn underfoot to spring small moments of guilt from never being careful enough.   Gabrielle Barnby August, [...]Read more of Wonderlust...