Angus Logan's Painting

A Touch Across Time

Across Time?

My Dad died some years back. I reconnected with him yesterday… a touch across time. No need to put on your spooky-head and let galacial spiders crawl up your spine. I’d mark this as higher on a warm-happy spectrum than a cold-scary one.

Hanging around

Paintings, actually. We’ve been putting them up around the new house. There was a cluster of Dad’s work and one or two needed fixing. He used to back his paintings with old cardboard and masking tape. One in particular fell apart when I picked it up. Old stuff, old tape, and, previously unnoticed, two typed pages of history attached at the back of the frame.

Past history …

Dad’s words, typos and ink corrections covered the back. Family history and pic. Who needs and iPhone?

Painting Words 1 OPTCraft-knife in hand I started to trim and secure everything. Painting Words 2 OPTAnd with the touch of the frame and contents …

… Present connection

The last hand to do this work was my Dad’s, maybe twenty-five or thirty years ago. And there, as I removed old tape and re-secured the backing we connected. Not spooky. No fear. We worked together.

Painting OPTI read his words and heard his voice, gazed at the painting and was there as he recalled the 1920s. No I’m not that old, but there I was.

I felt warm, happy, wistful  and proud to know Dad. I remember his passing, I’m not sure he’s gone … go figure.

© Mac Logan


Here we are …

Here we are? Sure, give or take a surge of blood pressure

two bearsStress comes when you resists the urge to apply blunt-force to uncaring people. In my case, the folks who sold us our house. I mean, we know it needs work … but, after reassurances from the sellers, we half-believed the place would be move-innable. It wasn’t.

Cupar and Crail

With our complete house packed, we had to divert everything to storage and start a major clean up. We lived in two separate locations with overnight bags for a couple of weeks. You don’t get everything lined up for a move then expect to need more smalls, socks and toiletries.

Stressful—up to a point—then there’s the love

I’m told moving is stressful. The researchers who proved it were right. Tina Turner sang What’s love got to do with it?. A lot actually. Our family came out of the woodwork. Since we got here we’ve had buckets of support. Our local trades-people are truly helpful heroes.

The word is you can never get a professional helper in a month of Sundays. Well, they got that wrong in our new village, Colinsburgh. I saw the local painter washing his car, we chatted, he fitted us in and gave us tips for our decorating.

My local carpenter came over and helped, no problem. He said “anytime” for a neighbour. I think the heating-engineer has something to live up to (he’s on my agenda for tomorrow).

Then there’s family

What’s love got to do with it, indeed. People came from far and wide, kids, grandkids, siblings, partners … the walls and humans got covered in paint. Informal picnics in the untidiness. Muscle power built new steps in the garden and put heavy boxes in the attic. Electrical work illuminated winter-dark walls. We tore out ghastly units from the conservatory and sorted the walls in a few days.

Every weekend since we got here was filled with different groups. Bottles of bubbly came and went (Yum).

Cup o’ kindness

Today, I just pored myself a Deacon’s Seat whiskey (no Americans can’t spell it). A present from a wonderful friend in Seattle. That symbolic dram will grow and improve with cask-age, just like all of the people who have shred their energy and love. Thanks folks.

It’s a while since I wrote where’s Mac. He’s in a contented place … even though there’s lots to do.

Where is Mac?

Where is Mac?

Where is Mac?

We’re right in the middle of moving house and doing busy-stuff.

Finding time to post has been hard. I decided to make some today. Goodness me, I feel a poem coming on.

(*Scots some times call a house a ‘hoose’):

Hoose to Hoose*

Amidst the boxes here I sit

And contemplate our complex flit

Of things to do and weights to lift

And photos needing of a sift

And rules and deeds and papers lawful

And complications … bloody awful

And removal contracts changing dates

And boxes stuffed with heavy weights

Of books and contents most confusing

Of stress and tempers close to losing

And so I pause and breathe a sigh

Call the new place to mind’s eye

And leaning back think of the view

The peace, the quiet … there’s the clue

Kids and grandkids close at hand

And close by hill and sea and sand

An open fire in wintry cold

To warm my bones … if truth be told

The pain of waiting eases swift

As future thoughts my spirits lift

Mac Logan

I Ask Myself

I Ask Myself

I Ask Myself (as I reach for the sky)I see the world through two blue eyes
That focus light inside my brain
Observe the work of natures hands
And rainbow spectrum after rain
Gaze at a dawn’s eternal splendour
Turning blackened clouds to gold …

But do I see truths of existence — greatly sought since times of old?

I hear the world through two lobed ears
That let sound pass into my mind
And listen in to natures sounds
Sweet bird song and wind whipped brine
Have heard a new birth scream at life
Brave tales heroes strong and bold …

But do I hear truths of existence — greatly sought since times of old?

I touch the world with two strong hands
Passing texture to my brain
Feel the strength of natures building
Rose thorn’s jagged prick of pain
Have clenched smooth pebbles in my hand
Felt water trickle from my hold …

But do I touch truths of existence … greatly sough since times of old

Mac Logan

I’m packing up to move to our new home, two seeks on Friday. That means I’m digging through old stuff. I found a heap of my poems and songs from early to mid 70s (age 23 -25).

Poker Face — part 3

This is not suitable for young readers.

The experimental whodunnit goes on. The text is hot off the ‘pen’ with minimal editing. Part 4 follows soon. I hope story-line ideas will flow from readers (and writers).

Part 3

Staring eyes - Poker faceIt’s an absolute fact … someone dunnit.

Question 1
: who-dunnit?

Question 2: do you really want to know?
Question 3: are you prepared to risk your life to find out?

(part 1 is here) (part 2 is here)

‘… blood squirts from wounds and sprays around. Other gore is thrown from a bloody weapon as it’s wielded.’

‘So, some comes from the inside out and some splashes around from the act of striking.’

‘Precisely, ma’am: sprays and splatter …’ A sharp, howling female scream interrupted his answer.

The door handle rattled as a person struggled to open it. Wild sobbing caterwauls of distress, rising and falling, and punctuated by a slobbering, breathy chewing sound. With a triumphal shriek, the door burst open.

Inspector Wilcox nodded to the Constable. A wild woman dressed in jodhpurs, riding boots and a checked cotton shirt, tail hanging out at the rear, charged into the room. ‘Where is she?’ Here eye caught the stiff leg propped against the chair arm. She leapt forward, stopping suddenly as the Constable caught her waist. ‘Let me go.’ Her rage punched out through clenched teeth.

‘Hold her man.’

‘I must go to her.’

‘No, not yet, it’s a crime scene.’

‘Let … MEEE … go!’ She squirmed, slapped and scratched at the policeman’s face. The Inspector pulled out his whistle and blew hard. Almost immediately two more dark uniformed men entered.

‘Take her to the doctor, lads.’ He turned to Lady Jayne, ‘perhaps he’ll sedate her.

‘She’s looking pretty wild.’

‘Indeed. Who is she? Daughter?’

‘No,’ Lady Jayne’s alluring face stilled for a moment, ‘her lover actually.’ Beautiful hazel eyes posed a question.

‘How contemporary.’ The Inspector half-smiled and tapped his nose. ‘Discretion guaranteed ma’am … now where were we?’

‘The doctor tells us she took some savage blows. Judging by the fireplace, the blows spattered blood about—as we’ve just discussed.’ She took a breath, as if about to speak. He held up his hand and silenced her. This time she nodded, dutiful. ‘We’ll get to it in a minute. First, let’s finish our thoughts on her fall over the chair.’

‘Enlighten me Inspector.’

‘Where on the walls do you see blood splatter.’

‘There isn’t any on this side of the chair.’

‘Correct. Where does it start?’

‘There isn’t much above the level of the mantlepiece.’

‘Does it look like spray?’

‘No. More like it was thrown from a paint brush.’

‘And your conclusion?’

‘She went over the chair and landed on the hearth.’ Lady Panmure said.

‘I agree and she was conscious … at first.’

‘How can we tell?’

‘If I’m right, the body will provide confirmation. Let’s start with the hands.’ The corpse lay on her back, face covered by dense black hair. Her left arm started straight out from the body, twisted and broken where the shard of bone extended from the break in the forearm. The hand clutched empty air. Two nails were partially torn off, and the index fingernail hung by a small piece of skin. ‘First confirmation of our hypothesis, ma’am.’

‘Tell me more, Inspector.’

‘When a body falls, conscious, there are signs of consciousness, Injuries cause by instinctive defensive behaviour, grabbing at things and so on.’

‘And unconscious?’

‘It’s almost like the flow of water as it follows the path of least resistance. Everything flops. When she fell she didn’t flop, at first, as she went over the chair.’

‘It’s on castors but it didn’t move.’

‘It moved until it hit the hearth edge. See the castor scores on the floor?’

‘Oh yes. And by the looks of things, it bounced back.’

‘Probably slid from under her as she fell onto the chair arm nearest the fire. And that explains the crumpled rug. As she was pushed, she fell backwards with the chair which suddenly stopped and then rebounded as her weight pressed it backwards and she fell vertically on to the hearth-edge.’

‘You think she fell vertically?’ She said.

‘By the looks of things, straight down, head backwards.’

‘There isn’t much blood spray.’

‘Something killed her. Let’s check the wounds and see what they tell us.’ He turned to her, appreciating the respect in her eyes. ‘Are you sure you want to see this?’ He made a few notes in his pad.

‘It’s hugely interesting, Inspector, I want to know.’

He pulled the victim’s hair gently aside. A sharp sucking of aristocratic breath made him consider stopping, but he pressed on locked in the process of discovery. He envisaged a frenzy. Half of the woman’s face lay almost serene. The other half carried the massive distortion of wild violence: temple, cheek, eye-socket, mouth, jaw-line and neck all re-shaped by demented savagery.

‘Oh! … God!’

Oh to be innocent again, new to the horror, perhaps able to choose another career … ‘Her eye is missing.’

‘… Awful …’ He didn’t mistake her gulping breaths and strong efforts at self-control.

‘In some crimes we follow the money. In murder, we follow the blood.’

They both looked along the congealed, blackening splatter trail.  ‘There, the carriage clock,’ she said, ‘the handle.’ An eye with strands of tissue sticking to the brass stared lonely from it’s ornamental position.

She made a gargling sound.

He turned. ‘Spare the crime scene ma’am.’ He seized her by the waist and hauled her to a bay window. Two buttons sprang from her blouse as he tugged her. She retched. Her lunch splashed across his Oxfords and over the wooden floor. She clung to him as he pulled out his hanky, her silk encased cleavage impossible to ignore. ‘Here, Lady Panmure.’

She mumbled thanks and wiped her mouth. He could feel her balance returning, but she still clung to him.

‘Jayne,’ she said. ‘Do you always stare at aristocratic breasts?’

‘Every chance I get, ma’am … err … Jayne.’

‘The brutality …’ she said.

‘The rage. We have a maniac near at hand. No one is safe.’

With a crackle, the lights flickered and went out. Outside a winter sun descended behind the trees.

Mac Logan

Inky Dusk


counterpoint to SunWork

Inky Dusk

The sun goes down
Without a sound.
Sweet Nature holds her breath

Cold clammy cloud
A dank dark shroud
Prepares to hide the death

Days warmth now flees
Through black’ning leaves
Hearth huddling folk draw near

Dead branches scratch
Sharp briars catch
More fuel for primal fear

The moon creeps by
In pitch-black skies
A demon lamp on high

Wind wolves harsh howl
Cloud faces scowl
Gale whipped bat leaves flit by

Farm dogs call
While dead men crawl
Stark evil deeds are done

Hag witches dance,
Wild devils prance
Unhinder’d by the sun

Mac Logan



Sunwork by Mac

Night blackened sky
Twilight is nigh
When chrome-steel waters glow.
And better yet
Stark silhouettes
Dimensional will grow

Black leaves bare seen
Turn gentle green
Oak trunks to mellow brown
A silver sea
Soon blue will be
Sun gleams sparkling round

When day fresh dawns
The whole world yawns
And shakes a weary head
Sleek deer and fawns
Tread wooded lawns
Bright green for night has fled

Black to grey
At start of day;
Commence the daily run
Blue to red
Then off to bed;
Earth warming task well done

See Inky Dusk for the dark side
Mac Logan