By Roddy Scott
She rose up and bit us hard, after
Winter’s ices, cracked and bitter shards
had closed up pools and puddles over
sodden rain-drunk ground, our reflections
lost, ‘til melting sun reveals a lonely face
in so many collections of a wet embrace.
She washed heavy soaking rain straight
to brolly-bobbing hands, on sodden-leather feet.
February’s sub-zero tears track down cattle-hooves
and tear up Tarmac-holes in worn-out streets.
She’s tripped us up, Winter’s caught us napping,
the greenhouse lost four panes, his eyes are full of branches snapping-
rivers lost their banks to flooding
Port Elphinstone’s gardens sand-bagged
the River Don creeping up garden paths
skips full of sodden carpets, lagging
February rose up and bit us hard
after winter’s ices, cracked and bitter shards-
we’re looking west and north, south and east
for February’s winds fly fast and fleet.
She’s a swinging gate and busted glass, a great field,
pools of winter-sodden grass and when we look
one final time outside the rain-pocked window’s face
at the wettest of our human race,
washed, drenched, soaked, flensed,
we still hope the final storm will go and leave us,
leave us, and into Scandinavia blast and make
this crazy stormy present become our distant past.
(07.01.16, greatest flood in 100 years, Aberdeenshire.)
February: This poem was about the first time Aberdeenshire has experienced such terrible flooding (2016) in 100 years. I was teaching English up there at the time. I thought it was appropriate as we have been experiencing, here in the Central Belt, and pretty much everywhere in Scotland, a severely cold spell in February 2021. – Roddy Scott