From the anthology, Declarations: On Freedom for Writers and Readers, Professor Sir Tom Devine has selected three prize winners. We are delighted to announce that Jock Stein was selected for his piece, “Tones of Destiny”April 6, 2020
From the anthology, Declarations: On Freedom for Writers and Readers, Professor Sir Tom Devine has selected three prize winners. We are delighted to announce that Jock Stein was selected for his piece, “Tones of Destiny”
Tones of Destiny
I want to listen to our storied language,
wake, remember who I am;
I want to know our stacked up history
I want a hope for the unborn.
I want a book that rustles unseen wings,
that reads the reader, smiles at her;
I want to grow an open heart and mind,
I want to find surprising friends.
I want St Andrew’s simple bread and fish
to feed a million Scottish throats;
I want Queen Margaret’s skill at politics
I want old John the Common Weal.
I want to read and write without a censor,
access poetry and art,
I want the axe which split de Bohun’s skull,
I want the light Columba found.
I want the magic of an island ceilidh
celebrating toil and play;
I want a life that someone notices,
I want to take some public steps.
I want the craft of Bellany and Burns,
the nous of Hume, the sense of Reid;
I want the music Robert Carver spun,
I want horizons to be bright.
I want to float a little mischief
guaranteed to cheer the sad;
I want to raise just one or two brain dead,
I want a cure more deep than pills.
I want the faithfulness Jane Haining showed
to those who faced the Auschwitz smoke;
I want a God who is not deaf or dumb,
I want to voice my own requests.
I want the mind that James Clerk Maxwell had
to integrate his faith and thought;
I want the punch of Spark and Connolly,
I want the subtle Rankin twist.
I want to honour men like yon Keir Hardie,
stand with women seeking space;
I want to offer Mary Slessor praise,
I want some footsteps I can fill.
I want to race with Liddell, Hoy; dream on
with George MacDonald, Murray Grieve;
I want enough to give to other folk,
I want to lose and find myself.
I want a Government who know the time
for referenda and for prayer;
I want to see the coming light of dawn,
I want a modest nation, wise and free.
Declarations on Freedom for Writers and Readers is published by Scotland Street Press, ISBN 978-1-910895-42-9, price £9.99, and is available from 6 April 2020 from the publisher www.scotlandstreetpress.com and from bookshops when they re-open.