The prompt for the day at Readwritepoem was to take a paint chart and use the names of colours to inspire a poem. At first I thought an autumn poem would be appropriate for this part of the world, but strangely, very few of the golds, oranges and reds on my paint chart seemed to have autumnal names. And after studying the names, I realised that I could write a poem that wouldn't be about colour at all.
When I saw "Rob Roy" and "Lochinvar" an idea started forming. And when I looked up Sir Walter Scott's poem Lochinvar on the internet I found I couldn't get its rhythm and rhyme out of my head. Rhyme is hard to do well and clumsy when it's not done well, but for once I decided to try it.
All the words and phrases in bold are from the paint chart, with the occasional "s" added as the poem demanded it.
The village is empty, its roads dusty grey
Its young men and women have all gone away
some to the cities and some to the war
and some sail on the tide to follow a star
The sandstone is crumbling, the broom rises high
a lone eagle flies across the pale sky
Scotch mist makes a mantle to cover the hill
and on gorse and on hemlock there falls a blue chill
The mine shaft’s deserted, no sound but spring rain
some fell among gunsmoke on Waterloo’s plain,
and some travel further on surf crest and spray
to follow a golden dream in lands far away
In a tumbledown barn on an old rusty nail
there hangs a worn saddle, its leather cracked and pale
but there’s none to bring apples or stroke horse’s neck
for they’ve all left the village and will not come back
A bitter crabapple grows twisted and gnarled
in the village forgot by the rest of the world
and the figures that swirl in the fog surely are
the ghosts of Rob Roy and of young Lochinvar