ROBIN FULTON MACPHERSON’S A Northern Habitat: Collected Poems 1960-2010 (2014) and Unseen Isles and Other Poems (2018) have been published by Marick Press (Michigan). Poets he has translated include (from Norwegian) Olav H. Hauge and (from Swedish) Tomas Tranströmer, Harry Martinson (winning the Bernard Shaw Prize) and Kjell Espmark.

Read his translations here, here, and here.



Evenings are too bright and last too long.
Agoraphobia confuses
the distances I´m familiar with.
Pines that have lived for seven decades
side by side have now moved miles apart

and even the syllables we need
let the spaces between them widen
and soon they´ll lose sight of each other.
We wonder if they´ll find their way back
and join into words when evenings darken.




I pause beneath a street-lamp
in the dark before dawn.
What a narrow world I´m in,
neither bright not shaded,
an unchanging amber glow
on asphalt without news
but for the arrival and
departure of moisture.



At a Glance

Is this how divinity works –
in the dark, a pin-
point of light noticed, forgotten?

Could be a landing-light seeming
stlll as a star seems
but at speed sagging towards earth.

Could be a lamp-post not far off
lighting up all night
a crumbling path leading nowhere

except to a disused harbour
where the water gleams
like a surface we could walk on.



All works published by the Glasgow Review of Books are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License and the journal reserves the right to be named as place of first publication in any citation. Copyright remains with the poet.


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The Glasgow Review of Books (ISSN 2053-0560) is an online journal which publishes critical reviews, essays and interviews as well as writing on translation. We accept work in any of the languages of Scotland – English, Gàidhlig and Scots.

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