Lockdown challenge



Over the course of the pandemic Angus and I compiled a book about our family history. Angus has been researching his for over 60 years and I joined in when we married. Three children, four grandchildren and 50 years of marriage gave us plenty of recent history to recount and our research filled in the back story. The various lockdowns presented us with the opportunity and we took it.

We understand ourselves and our families better if we know a bit about what has gone before. Of course, we would understand mankind better if we went back to the Bible and read the story from the beginning.

Today’s poem is about my great aunt Bella, who very kindly took over the role of granny when my granny, her sister, died.


If I had a cow


Aunt Bella was a widow

with two children to bring up

and a croft to work.


She had some cows, hens

- there was always one called Geggly -

and two or three fields

where she over-wintered ewes.


The cows all had names.

There was Mabel and Maud



in neighbouring stalls,

And Maggie and Ella

in the next ones down.


They were called after far-out cousins

she liked to remember,

folk she wanted her children

to know were relations.


If I had a cow,

I’d call her Bella.


Written for the Scottish Fellowship of Christian Writers and used by kind permission.


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