Bridget Khursheed – three poems

Plough competition from the A91

the field is cut as if for drain laying
or an archaeological trench
the strips rigging out of each squat tractor
corduroy samplers
edible loam turned back like the earth’s skin
the good stuff beneath
the Masseys – this is a vintage rally
a word of mouth thing – there is no sign
for spectators – a lonely burger van
is uncustomer-ed in the corner of the field
there are a lot of men here
recreating the past and measuring it
and then a neat row of new 4x4s into Cupar.

Football supporters’ social club funerals

sometimes you think
it could be a wedding
the groups of people are the same
bursts of laughter, hats, taxis,
the new baby to be complimented
ah huvnae seen ye fur a lang time.

They stand on the cobbles
black suits and cigarettes
and eventually the mood changes
still it could be a wedding
too much heavy
he war a big man, nae,
gentle pushing becomes
a cry of pain, the fast scuffle
makes a maudlin shuffle home

it’s all the dancing tonight but the woman
with the baby is hooking up
with someone new in the late sun
smoke-shaped heart
next time it will be a wedding
the only thing missing now
is the music

Web monkeys

We move together, hunching
down at the coffee break, eating
biscuits we don’t want,
remembering a colleague left
gameplay upset
and what was last night’s boxset.

Immutable truths are repeated:
the sanctity of the Mac,
and XML object reuse,
the law of usability,
while our hands twitch at the thought
of the latest app:
Vector’s last stand,
or being fluffy and blowing
hard shapes back to kingdom come.

11 o’clock and someone makes the move
starting all of us on the long
detours that take us back to our desks
and keyboards that jump together
eventually into some kind of sequence
representing education
that they’ll say is good enough.

Bridget Khursheed is a poet and geek based in the Scottish Borders. She is a Scottish Book Trust New Writer Award winner for poetry and has been published in anthologies and journals including New Writing Poetry, The Rialto and The London Magazine.

Her pamphlet ‘Roads to Yair’ (Twinlaw Publishing) came out on 1st May 2015.

Find her at and @khursheb

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