Seaway, the final pamphlet in the shortlist for 2017’s Callum Macdonald Memorial Award, is different in scale from the others. It is very small; just right for slipping into a pocket.

Its minimalist poems and matching illustrations provoke smiles or quiet pondering, in their colour palette of black, blue, grey, and white. Leonard McDermid has created something original on a miniature scale (publisher, Stichill Marigold Press).

ISLAND EVENING

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weary dusk dropping

how quiet the evening

tired old puffer

~

beached

~

COAST BATTERY

after the night shoot

ears ringing

~

boots loud clatter

~

shatter the silence

~

SIESTA ADRIFT

unmanned and unmoored

afternoon high tide

old barge

seeks the open sea

~

ESTUARY

The river widens

see there

beyond the sea-buoy

the grey turns blue.

~

NIGHT CONTINENTAL

sad those night departures

quiet train curving

to the dark quay

~

into the small hours