Lesley Benzie is Aberdonian but calls Glasgow home. She writes in Scots Doric and English. She has 2 poetry collections her first, Sewn Up and more recently, Graham Fulton, says of her collection, Fessen/Reared (Seahorse 2020) that it is ‘Lyrical, incisive, true…Gently brilliant’. She has also been published in numerous magazines/anthologies. In 2020, she received a Highly Commended in the Federation of Writers Scotland and Runner-up in McCash Scots Poetry Competitions. In 2021 she was shortlisted in the Main and Scots categories of the Wigtown Poetry Prize.
She is a contributor to the two collaborative collections: Wanderlust Women; 3 poets and Extra Baggage (Seahorse 2022 & 2023). This collaboration toured extensively in Scotland and Europe in 2022 and will travel more widely in the UK, Europe and Australia in 2023. She is also part the collaborative Doric collection Norlan Lichts (Rymour Books 2022), nominated for Book of the year in the Scots Language Awards, in which she was also nominated as the Writer of the Year.
In addition, she works as an NHS counsellor/psychotherapist and has been involved in the running of charities as an employee for over 25 years and several years as a trustee.
Fessen in the Vernacular
At times, life can be
a North Sea wave, brakkin ower me
caul an hard, like a fist
ah’m nae quick enough tae sidestep.
Like lost love, it taks ma braith awa
an ah’m soaked through,
unable tae cling
tae the perts o me
bi the hershness
At ithers ah’m a dreich island landscape
shot through wi the strength o slate grey,
dense volcanic rock.
The dark violet sky circlin owerheid.
Theday, ah took ye past
the Fittie Bar, ma da’s favourite,
far ma faimily congregated tae bid him his last.
There is ane o them wide blue skies
turnin the sea a deep bluegreen
like his een.
Ye mock ma accent that shifts
back an forth
fae Glasgow, ma spiritual hame
an back tae Aiberdeen
like the wee waves lappin at oor taes.
Despite the charged sea life smell,
jist the same the salt smerts oor kisses.
An ah’m grateful for it aa
an that ancient ability
wi ma hairt.