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On an Old Scots Dictionary by Roddy Lumsden

In 100 Poems, poetry on February 15, 2009 at 7:04 pm

Title: On an Old Scots Dictionary
Author: Roddy Lumsden
Number: 88/100
Allocated postcode: EH2

On an Old Scots Dictionary

Crack the tartan spine, flick through, you’ll find
at least as many terms for slut and slattern

as there are for crops and farming implements:
clort and clatch, latheron, soss and slodge explained

as ‘lumpish sloven’, ‘plate-licker’, ‘a strumpet’,
‘a heavy drab’, ‘a slobbering woman of low morals’;

so many words that I picture her wide-thighed
in a loft of the barn and her wild hair’s in the straw,

ill-defined, and if I can’t see her eyes, how can I
find them in the throngs and queues: the herring girls

newsing on the quay head, high-haired bathing belles
in lines at Largs, the lunch-hour temps on Rose Street.

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  1. […] Circus Lane by Ivan Landers No. 86: Sweet Sandy by McGuire No. 87: Scarlet by Roddy Lumsden No. 88: On an Old Scots Dictionary by Robby Lumsden No. 89: The Summer of EH26 by Anita John No. 90: After the Festival by Anita John No. 91: A Recipe […]

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