Garry Mackenzie


Darkening Hills

after Wang Wei

Twilightin late autumn:
a film of smirrover empty hills

Moonlightpeers through firs,
a cool streamtrembles over stones

Birches whisperas the girls come home
rowans partas others leave

The scents of springnever last long
but you, my friend,you stay with me. Just stay.



空山新雨後, 天氣晚來秋。

明月松間照, 清泉石上流。

竹喧歸浣女, 蓮動下漁舟。

隨意春芳歇, 王孫自可留。


The path up the hill

after Wang Wei

gnarly stream       where stones gleam white.

Thin skies.       Releaves in the wind.

No rain falls       on the path up the hill

but I’m soaked       to the skin with the blue. 





White hairs

after Wang Wei

Once a bairn, in now a dawdling old man;

white hairsin where there used to be down.

Doesn’t the heartin get right hurt by life!

Someplace, in or thereabouts, a gate,

and beyondin all this yearning ends.




Garry MacKenzie has won poetry awards including the Wigtown Poetry Competition and a Scottish Book Trust New Writer’s Award. He has a PhD in contemporary landscape poetry, and his non-fiction book Scotland: A Literary Guide for Travellers was published by I.B. Tauris in 2016.

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