>The Lykewake Of Morag: A Poem By Pete Marshall


The Lykewake Of Morag: 
A Poem By Pete Marshall

The crows would circle high above
As death would waken on the ground
A hand would stretch and flick its claws
To trap the prey that swooped on down.
As feathers fell on sodden earth
And float as boats upon the breeze
Bones would crunch and blood would splay
That fed the Scarecrows dark disease.

The haar would creep along the links
As song was heard beyond the hill
The tabor marked the lykewake start
As clans would bow and mourn their still.
Upon the beach the waves would crash
And curse and spit their maddened angst
The mortcloth lay across her soul
As friends would come and offer thanks.

Through wynd and vennel souls would part
As spirits fled the darkened streets
The Scarecrow watched in silent thought
Whilst winds would blow through mans deceit.
And dirks were drawn at Morag’s hame
As Chiefs would curse their spoken vow
Blades would clash and wounds were deep 
But one remained to tell this tale…….


This is my poem for One Shot Wednesday, run by One Stop Poetry, a fast growing community for poets & writers of all genres to share their work, express and make friends


Image courtesy creative commons flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/artbel/

70 Responses to “>The Lykewake Of Morag: A Poem By Pete Marshall”

  1. >epic pete…particularly the last stanza…bet you wrestled with that one. smiles. happy oneshot!

  2. >Wow. I had to do some research on this one. Amazing job capturing the form and flavor of the ancient dirge. I always thought scarecrows were… well, scary. Stephen King would be proud.

  3. >Very dark and well executed. That last stanza is killer. Okay, enough with the death puns. lol Your poem shows great imagination and care for craft. cheers, mate!

  4. >love it peter, love the clans..go to the games yearly and oh we do love the hearty clans…bkm

  5. >Hi Bri…thanks for your comments..yeah i had fun putting that one together..cheers Pete

  6. >Hi Patti..loved your comments. Hope you enjoyed the research and it made more sense…cheers Pete

  7. >Hi Adam..thanks.. thoroughly enjoyed writing this one and getting into he language..cheers Pete

  8. >Hi BKM glad you liked it..thought you might pick me up on some of it but seems i have passed LOl

  9. >a good bardic tale with strong "show rather the tell" lines that make it evocative. Also use of language and spelling to give it a period feel. I have posted two poems this week. On not saying hello is new but Kingpin Baby was posted up on a quiet Sunday so I thought I’d give it another outing. Both are adaption of different formal poetry forms – pantoum and sonnet.

  10. >Hi John and thanks for your comments..i love my work to be descriptive and capture a scene, with this the language was important to set its period..cheers Pete

  11. >WOW..Pete! this is brilliant..!!!!!!! these lines took me..As Chiefs would curse their spoken vowBlades would clash and wounds were deep But one remained to tell this tale…….very very well written,it shows a hard struggle yet it came out marvelously..beautiful!

  12. >I love story poems, and this is a beautiful one.

  13. >This one, which takes me back to my medieval lit class of 35 years ago, calls out to be read aloud in a deep voice. Dark, evocative imagery. "But one remained to tell this tale" is a wonderful concluding line.

  14. >Pete, I'm at a loss for words here. This had a dark and primal tone to it that hooked me from the first line. And it freaking scared me… just a little bit mind. I'm not a total wuss. Much. 😛

  15. >LOVE that last line!!!!!!!! That was quite a tale glad it was able to be told!

  16. >Excellent job of the ancient form. Truly epic in its flavor and tone.

  17. >Excellent. I really loved this piece. W.B. Yeats would love this piece and it put me in mind of Yeats and that for me is saying a lot. Great imagery, set pattern well written and your rhymes and rhythms work so well. Wonderful!

  18. >I love the old worldy feel of this. And a great sense of darkness to it.

  19. >Desert rose..i am glad you liked itGlynn..i could see you reading thatMaureen…i want to learn more about your medieval lit classTony..thanks for those comments, no not a wuss, just a great imaginationSuzie..so many of you have picked up on that last verse, and the last line..truth be told that verse took me nearly four hours of just sitting there to complete!!! looks like it came right in the endEmily..thank you, that is a great commentTeressa – i like the word excellent..thank youbeachanny – wow yeats and me, side by side, that is praise indeed..thank you

  20. >Hi anthony – this poem gave me such great joy in doing the things i love, researching history (which i use a lot in poetry) and writing a poetic tale..thanks for the comment.cheers pete

  21. >I'm so glad that one remained to tell this tale…my grandpa used to tell us frightening stories of scarecrows – and then we had to walk – no – RUN!!! in the dark back home….i would've beaten Usain Bolt….

  22. >Wow! What a wonderfully well-crafted durge. Somehow made me think of Poe. I'm going to have to do some research later today after the day's responsibilities are handled. Going to have to re-read it … and that's a good thing.Thanks for very fine work, Pete.

  23. >Hi Claudia…and it was I who remained!!! hahahah..dont want to scare you really..cheers PeteJames..thanks for the comments..loved finding the language to pull this together..have fun my friend

  24. >Oh I like everything about this poemmostly its strengthbeautifully writtenthe hard work showed

  25. >Loved this! I don't know why, but my favorite line is: As clans would bow and mourn their still. War really is hell!

  26. >Such an ancient feel when nature and man respected one another.

  27. >What a magnificent poem. It just carried me to another time and place. Wonderful!

  28. >Never thought of a scarecrow being a witness, but why should rocks or trees get all the glory?Very grey and glorious!

  29. >Pete amazing choice of poem and very interesting. You had the last word i bet 🙂

  30. >The cold winds of Scotland blow right through this, laddie! Nicely written!http://mairmusic.wordpress.com/

  31. >This was so artfully crafted, Pete. The flow, the language…it was brilliant.

  32. >suz..thanks, that last stanza was harder then you could realise..interruptions and so forth but got their in the endthe bug..whatever the age..war was never and is never the answergwei..you are so true..a gift we seem to forgetLinda…then a job was done well..thanks for your commenteric..makes a change doesnt it..thanks for your commentswild rose…and as they all lay still i crawled from the remains of that god forgiven place, to tell the tale of the Lykewake of Morag..LOL cheers Petemairmusic..thanks i appreciate that…cheers Pete

  33. >Hi Talon…thanks.. i have said this before but i really had fun with this one..especially with the language and finding words to suit..cheers pete

  34. >This reminds me of the Battle of Glencoe. A gory but fantastic piece. Your poetry is second to none.Christine

  35. >Hi Chris..hope all is well with you? Thanks for commenting..glad you enjoyed this piece..cheers Pete

  36. >Celtic and Gaelic mythology make for excellent poetry! Wonderful post

  37. >brilliant pete, eerie, sent shivers down me spine mate 🙂

  38. >Dark, primal truth…just my style. Thanks for a good read, Pete.

  39. >Loved this poem, but then again I am part Irish -still use my maiden last name in Gaelic- — Interesting well crafted tale. I love the fact that I have to do some research on this topic. I did one on "Anam Cara" a while back, it took some doing but well worth it.cheers, Joannygreat one stophttp://thedowsersdaughter.blogspot.com/

  40. >hey pete, like Patti, I had to do some additional reading to fully understand this. No worries, I enjoy discovering new things. And what a great discovery this one is.very nicely done. we love them dark stories.

  41. >Lykewake Morag plunges us into dark almost forgotten times. I love the atmosphere. It reminds me of Lykewake Dirge,we ended up talking about the strange and fascinating customs of those days. Val

  42. >Dark and had a chill down my spine..loved the last stanza Pete…very well written!!

  43. >steven..thanks for that comment..yep a good mixwilliam..glad you liked it,,knowing the scot in you..she..not at all..glad it was likedjoanny…the research makes it more interesting..the poem worked because of the language..cheers petedivisoria…glad you did..loved doing it myself too..thanks for your commentstwilark..googled that, didnt know about it..was on good old wikipedia..great readamanda..glad you appreciated the last stanza coz that was a toughie..cheers Pete

  44. >My Gregory roots plunged deeply in love with this tale. I am loving these one shots.

  45. betweenhearts75 Says:

    >Amazing Pete, you tell an incredibly written dark tale. Oh yes, even a romantic poet can love…lol.Fascinating and the flow done so well! 🙂 ~ April

  46. >Wonderfully dark imagery. Enjoyed it all but really savored the last stanza.

  47. >"flick its claws" …ooh, so harsh, so desciptive. What an intriguing read and like everyone else has said, loved the last stanza!

  48. >I think I just found a lovely blog:Dlike itvisit mine 😀

  49. >This is so deep like the wounds…such a great historic epic feel to this piece and loved how you incorporated the native tongue of wherever this takes place in your imagination. 🙂 Heartspell

  50. >monkey man..thanks for your comments..glad you liked..cheers Petebetweenthehearts..and as a dark poet your romantic piece has somewhat captured me!!!Jena..so glad the last stanza worked for you..was the toughest one..so job well done i thinkcm..thanks for your great comments..cheers Peteladyulia..glad you liked and thanks for your commentsThanks Heartspell, tried to hit the highlands and think i captured it but i am sure there will be a few scots wanting to pick an english man up on this piece..

  51. >I feel like I'm back on the windy slopes of Glencoe watching the foggy ghosts drifting past… dark but heroic 🙂 even though some of the words meanings escape me, the mood grabs.

  52. >VERY nice, Pete! I love "going retro" with form, and this one reaches way back. But what really flicked its claws at me was the figure of the Scarecrow. The poem is powerful in its indictment: all this carnage to what end? What purpose is served, other than gorging the Scarecrow? Great stuff! Thanks for stopping by my blog, btw. See you around!

  53. >i truly envy and adore your poetry style !! every single post i read, makes me love your page all the more 🙂

  54. >Creepy. Good writing. Is there more to this?

  55. >I really dig your work – this poem has such a "creepy-like" (in a good way) feel to it that it makes me think of some of my fav horror films! Thanks for sharing and for checking out my blog! I hope to visit you again and I hope you continue to visit me.Thanks!

  56. >Rich use of language. Generates atmosphere and story. Makes me want to know where th estory goes from here. – Bill

  57. >sgneist…thanks for that..great to see you felt the atmosphere..cheers Petecarolina..thanks for you comments..glad you enjoyednimue…wow..can i add to that..WOWmorganna..thanks for stopping by..i will have to see about that onepeachpit..was my pleausre and thanks too for visitingbill cook..morganna said it too..maybe worth a look at.thanks to all Pete

  58. >usually I don't like this type of poetry cuz it can't keep my interest for the first two lines but i think you did a good job cuz i actually read the whole thing =p good stuff pete!

  59. >Hey Pete. i couldn't see where to leave a comment for your post "Disillusioned." Just wanted to say I can relate. I was unemployed/super underemployed for 10 months. Now I work just enough part time hours to meet my needs. On the bright side- it leaves more time for my writing 🙂

  60. >amazing job…

  61. >The last Stanza is a classic..!! Reading your poem was almost like visiting a funeral.. intense enough to make it feel real..!!

  62. >I had to consult Wikipedia for this read, but it was well worth it 🙂 a very interesting and well written piece.Cheers

  63. >luisydominuqe..then i must have done a good job..thank youthanks jinglerhythmeofmysoul..wonderful comment cheerstraceysays..glad you got hooked and wanted to look deeper..thanks

  64. >I read about halfway through Disillusioned, then I had to leave. I hope you find a job soon.

  65. >Hi, Pete!There's no where to respond on "Chivalry And Savagery" and "Poems That Stand Alone And Stand Proud." I enjoyed them. Good stuff. Worthy of more than one read. Thanks! Hope you and yours are having a good weekend.Jamie

  66. >I love the diction and "otherworldly' feeling i get reading this, a very well-crafted poem, Pete 🙂

  67. >Wow, another winner here

  68. >Wow – so when is the book coming out???those rocks look like ones from my home town – the MoonNice One Shot Petemoon smiles (finally)

  69. >Hi frayedges…thanks for reading those ones and taking the time to comment.. appreciate thatthanks jamiededes..maybe i should resurrect some of these and give them a page of their own..refloat an old etc…hi imagina1..thanks for your wonderful comment..cheers peteartwebshow..cheers for popping by glad you enjoyed thismoondustwriter..what i loved about the picture was the rocks looked like they were watching and just taking the whole thing in..short story..wouldnt know where to start..cheers pete

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