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  • Writer's pictureMonique Sliedrecht


It has turned out to be a wet afternoon at Freswick.

I'm just waiting for someone to show up to discuss the garden and other work that needs to be done on the site. Hope he brings his wellies!

While I wait, I thought I'd draw whatever was closest to me on the kitchen table, while some squash & bean chilli I made earlier simmers on the stove.

It feels like a true autumn afternoon. 'Dreich' is the word of choice. It describes a dull, damp Scottish day – one that's devoid of light, warmth and colour.

I did bring a bit of colour into my sketch, using my Derwent graphatint sketching tools, which are a type of watercolour pencil.

Here is my quick drawing of a succulent plant that seems to do alright, even if I forget to water it at times!

For a take on a Scottish weather report, see this fun wee clip.

You can follow the full text of the poem by Stuart A. Paterson below:

Here's the Weather

Today in London, the weather man speaks

of damp & of cold. In Scotland it’s dreich

with outbreaks of smirr, the occasional hoolie,

advice in the papers to look oot yer woolies,

a sudden dramatic surge & spike

in the sales of three-tiered winterdykes,

the urge to girn & to haiver & blether

carnaptious, forfochen & scunnert by weather,

dance round the double-edged sword of fash,

dinged doon by the elements, loving stramash

and the trauchle of baltic , foonert & droukit

fair molocates fears ye’re a diddy or stupid,

yer puckle concerns on the £ or on Brexit.

It’s the cant o the climate & aabody gets it

eeksie-peeksie, we mump & we greet & we tyauve it

fae Lerwick tae Perth, fae Kirkcaldy tae Hawick,

gan on how we hadnae a summer, it’s affy

and on wi the thermals & semmits & baffies,

gan oot for the messages, endin up pecht

wi the hail turravee, it’s a gey sair fecht

against pavements like ice rinks & wrasslin wi wind

and the nights that forever are fair drawin in,

shilpit & footerin & plooterin awa

through the dubs & the glaur & the clart & the snaw,

stravaigin through cundies & sheughs, a galoot

wi yer brolly destroyed & yer breeks hingin oot,

the haar & the virr & the flaggies & spitters,

the snell air that skelps ye & gies ye the chitters,

that makes ye doolally & drives ye tae swally

and sunbeds & creams tae be less peely-wally.

It’s the weather of language, the language of weather

penning us, writing us all in together,

the patter like watter that aabody kens

fae schemes tae the islands, fae high-rise tae glen.

Fae stooshie tae fankle tae bouroch tae dreck

we’re steeped in the downpour of dialect

which foosts & bumbazes & shoogles & heezes,

skites, dights, invites us, unites us & frees us.

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