Road Trip Skara Brae

The point of this trip, for me at least, was to visit Skara Brae. It had been on my bucket list ever since I saw the pictures my brother-in-law took on their  trip over nearly twenty years ago. (My brother wanted to mve into Skael House, which is an impressive sight to be sure.  But the main attraction is the neolithic village that was revealed after a fierce storm, the sands swirling and parting to give us a glimpse of communal life 5,000 years ago. They reckon the village was inhabited for over half a millenium before it was abandoned. 

Perhaps one reason I find neolithic sites so appealing is tht offer themselves to our imagination. There is no one pat version of their story. History is famously described as the victor’s version of the truth. This is pre-history. They may well have had a phonetic alphabet (there were other places), but they did not leave us any examples of graffitti until the Vikings swanned in on their longboats and left runes recording their bragging rights inside Maes Howe. 


Skara Brae

When we lived

Inside a honeycomb

One cell built on

To another

The whole more important

Than the individual

Component

It hummed that tune

Making sweet honeyed tones

For nearly a millenium

From the we

Instead of the me

For some honey leaves

An indifferent aftertaste

On the palate.

Who does not want to be queen

In their own space

Or in their very soul?

To not have to bend to enter

One’s own homeplace.

Copyright 2019 Bee Smith

 

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