South facing, sheltered,
some time home to battleships.
and frequently, more recently,
beneath the flare of Flotta,
tankers, forming orderly queues,
tugged neatly into line to unload oil.
Slightly curving, fine grain strip of sand
spins and drifts across the narrow
(the ditch to channel the highest of the tides
back to the sea.)
A one-time war time hut,
crane re-sited seaplane station
blocked in, domesticated
between a couple of distilleries.
The westerly a single word on white:
‘Scapa’ spelt across its zig-zag end,
the other, glorious Highland Park.
Black pagoda chimneys
adding exotic to the skyline,
black sheds and steaming drains
imparting a spirit sense of smuggler,
as the whisky reeking washwater
swirls out to fill the burn,
alongside which, on fence posts,
perch appreciative seagulls,
inhaling to forget their former sins.
Text and Images by Sandra Davies