Sin I Cam By Johnshaven

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The Sheilin blade

Andy Shanks (for Vallie Craig)

See Vallie’s hands sheil the air Quiek as Gourdon’s cauld,

Her memories a weathered line

Lang as days are auld.

See first licht spark on herrin scales

Her twa bairns in a baurel

As the line o’ years fill out

Wi spindrift days and tackle.

Her words can’t catch the memory fast

Or the last boats out frae Johnner

An the stane pier’s sweirt tae tell its tale

O partan, creels an thunder.

But when Vallie hauds her sheilin knife

Her blade and hand like brithers

The years fa by and sherp as steel

We bait the lines thigither.