With this poem by Kenneth Steven, who gave us our Iona rock:
I remember what it was like to barefoot that house,
Wood rooms bleached by light. Days were new voyages, journeys,
Coming home a pouring out of stories and of starfish.
The sun never died completely in the night,
The skies just turned luminous, the wind
Tugged at the strings in the grass like a hand
In a harp. I did not sleep, too glad to listen by a window
To the sorrow sounds of the birds
As they swept down in skeins, and rose again, celebrating
All that was summer. I did not sleep, the weight of school
Behind and before to great to waste a grain of this.
One four in the morning at fist lark song I went west over the dunes,
Broke down running onto three miles of white shell sand, and stood.
A wave curled and silked the shore in a single seamless breath.
I went naked into the water, ran deep into a green
Through which I was translucent. I rejoiced
In something I could not name; I celebrated a wonder
Too huge to hold. I trailed home, slow and golden,
Dried by the sunlight.
This poem is a memory from a holiday on the island of Coll, where he spent summers as a teenager. He also spent time on Iona, and shared with me that his mother was a great collector of Iona greenstone and other rocks. He is as well, as I’ve shared earlier.