Tinkin’ Lang

Photo by Katie Ailes

Photo by Katie Ailes

Da sandy strand at maks up Aberdeen Beach
Crunches an’under me buits as I stride alang,
An’ I gaze oot tae sea at aa’ da ships
Set apö da North Sea’s surface.
Dis pairt o’ da city isna kent fir bein’ quiet,
An’ hit’s no’ juist me, but da dug walkers
An’ da fokk wi’ peerie bairns ir aa’ aboot
Keepin’ me company, an’ yet dey irna.

While hit’s mebbe no’ as fresh as hame
Da sea air is heady an’ thick wi’ saat,
An’ I tak’ a meenit tae savour da breath
An’ da taste o’ it inside me mooth.
Da familiar horn soonds fae a distance,
Dat lood at you kin hear it fae here.
But I try no’ tae pay it ony mind
An’ juist enjoy da company o’ dis uncan fokk.

Den hit passes, an’ I canna miss it.
Da familiar white o’ da north boat
Casts its silhouette ower da watter,
Wi’ da familiar blue Viking
Emblazoned ower each side
An’ pointin’ nort, as if tae remind me
Whar it’s gjaan, rubbin’ in my faess
Becis as usual, it’s awa’ ithoot me.

Glossary: Buits – boots // Apö – upon // Uncan – strange (uncan fokk = strangers) // Gjaan – going // Ithoot – without

Hannah Nicholson is a Creative Writing MLitt student at the University of Aberdeen. She writes: 'I am originally from Shetland, and often write in Shetland dialect, being keen to promote it as a form of written and spoken Scots. I am also a graduate of the University of Strathclyde,, holding a BA (Hons) in English with Journalism and Creative Writing, which I completed in 2010. After my undergraduate I remained in Glasgow and went on to intern with Cargo Publishing for a time. I frequently perform my work in public, and am currently working on the third draft of a novel. I can be found on Instagram under the handle ‘tooriekep’.