Poetic Writing of ROBBIE KENNEDY BENNETT © www.rkbpoetry.co.uk Born in Wolverhampton of English and Scottish parentage. He grew up on the Rough Hills Estate area of the town and his Scottish ancestral roots are in the Kingdom of Fife and Dundee. The author is now residing in Codsall, Staffordshire. Drawings, pictures and writing are copyright of the author Robbie Kennedy Bennett. I LOVE THE LOMONDS.

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I Love The Lomonds ©

I wish I could see the Lomonds
Each morning when I rise,
I love the Lomonds
An impressive sight they are to my eyes.

I Love The Lomonds © Robbie Kennedy Bennett

The Lomond Hills have two peaks, East and West Lomond and they are in central Fife.
West Lomond is the greater and can be seen for many miles.

For further information;

One early May morning 2010 in the parish of Falkland the church clock chimed six times as I walked from my car. Once again I had travelled overnight to Fife, crossing the border about 3.00am, this time to climb the Lomonds. I had first mentioned them in my poem The Kingdom of Fife and I wanted to see for myself how good the views were from up there so I was hoping for a clear morning. I hadn’t done the best of homework and wasn’t sure where the best place to park my car would be for an easy access. I did find it a bit hard, as it is quite a short and steep climb from Falkland taking about an hour. I found myself damming Scotland for drawing me to challenges like this, as I’m not getting any younger. Far gone was the time when I was running marathon after marathon. The only real exercise I get these days are the daily dog walk and a 20minute work out at home before I set off to work.

With a fast beating heart and tired legs I paused a few times to see the magnificent view that was appearing behind me. I was told that my Great Grandfather would sit outside his house in Monkstown, Ladybank admiring the Lomonds; I wanted to climb the Lomonds for that very reason. To be up where he has looked at countless times. I was cursing a bit because as I was getting close to the top that there was some cloud forming in a southern easterly direction and moving around the hill. If I had any gas left as they say I would have put my foot on it but to be honest I was shattered.

It was noticeable when I did get to the summit of just under 1,400ft that the wind was stronger the south side of East Lomond. The views from there over the Ballo and Harperleas Reservoirs were spectacular, well worth suffering for a while from aching joints and breathlessness. And guess what? I’d forgot to bring my camera so pictures taken from my mobile phone had to do.

© Robbie Kennedy Bennett

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Damn Ye Scotland ©

I have to catch my breath
my heart is beating fast,
damn ye Scotland dam ye
the damning didnae last.

© Robbie Kennedy Bennett

From there I followed the trail passing disused quarries and down to Craigmead car park making my way by road back to Falkland. By this time I had recovered from the climb and was appreciating the tranquil sound of running water and birds singing. I was being looked on as suspicious by the ewes and their lambs in the field on the outskirts of Falkland. This wee trek really did ease the working stress of the past year.
I decided to leave West Lomond about 1,700ft to some other time giving me a reason to pay Fife another visit.

Within a short while I walked into Kingskettle Cemetery and like a lot of places in Fife there is a fine view of the Lomonds. I read my ancestors gravestone, having only found it in recent years and thought about people I had never met. Certainly many times in their life they would have looked at the Lomonds, those two peaks of volcanic origin that dominate the skyline, and now I’ve been up there, what a feeling.

Next stop was Ladybank where I sat on a bench by the war memorial eating a sausage roll that I had purchased for breakfast. Soon I was driving south arriving back in Codsall about 2.30pm. In our dining room is a water coloured painting of the Lomonds by Leslie Broadfield, a relation of mine from a photograph that I had taken. I have studied it many times and thought that I should climb up there sometime, now I can say I have.

Another wee trek fascinated by Fife,
My ancestral kingdom is alive in my life.

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I'VE BEEN THERE AT THE RISING SUN © Robbie Kennedy Bennett

What have I done? Wait, I’ll pour a drink,
let me settle here with a dram
and let me think.

What have I done?
I’ve been there at the rising sun
in your garden ay that royal garden.

© Robbie Kennedy Bennett

A poem of what I’ve done in recent years when returning to Fife. Scaling East Lomond at dawn and although breathless I’m fascinated by the view all around and thinking that this is where the Royal family of Stuarts made their country escape.

The land before me I thought was hunting territory for the Royals as I searched for Strathmiglo, Auchtermuchty, Collessie and Ladybank.

Even to this day Andy Stewart’s A Scottish Soldier takes me back to my childhood. Although not on the top of a Highland Hill I’m here on my ancestor hills of home, and it felt special.

I’ve Been There at the Rising Sun © Robbie Kennedy Bennett

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HERE IN THE HOWE © Robbie Kennedy Bennett

Oh, how leesome
the Howe and all its pasture
will it last yer? Oh Laddie
will it now

here in the Howe
a lang and lestie measure of
rural pleasure and a gladsome mark
a scar that hurts my heart
Bonnie Scotland
guilty thou art

Here in the Howe © Robbie Kennedy Bennett

Picture of programme with kind permission of Rosemary Middleton, Cupar Highlands Games.

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© Robbie Kennedy Bennett.

Went a misty walk 'bout Dairsie
hark at the Eden
amongst the trees and bushes
hark at the Eden
under Dairsie bridge she rushes...

© Robbie Kennedy Bennett.

Once more it was an early morning five hour drive to the Kingdom of Fife. Breakfast at West Moreland another break at Moffat and then on towards Kirkcaldy for a food shop. My wife and I were booked into Clayton Caravan Park for a week for a well deserved holiday.

It turned out to be an unsettled week but England appeared to be having it worse with news of floods. The days here were misty as I soon found out when on my early morning walk around Dairsie. I could hear the Eden flowing before I could see it as I walked down towards Dairsie Bridge. The River Eden I believe flows from the borders near Perth and Kinross to the Eden Estuary into the North Sea by St Andrews.

We had planned to attend the Cupar Highland Games on Sunday the first day of July 2012.

Cupar Highland Games were started in 1979 by David Lang (past Scottish Marathon Runner) and David Martin of Cupar Round table. In the first year they, together with John Hendry organised the first meeting, ably assisted by members of Cupar Round Table.

When entering Duffus Park we could hear the bagpipes playing making a great Scottish atmospheric welcome.

The Highland Dancers were first to be competing and it was remarkable how young some of them were. The natural enthusiasm to dancing was apparent and they were a joy to behold. We had a short conversation with a mother of a dancer who was taking part in her first or second competition. It made my wife and I to think back to how we done something similar for our children in football and karate. The Pipers announced the arrival of the Chieftans and the games were soon under way. Runners, cyclists and the strongmen challenges, and of course Highland Dancing.

We had a walk about the south side of Cupar before heading back, watching the River Eden flowing on out of town.

We made sure we visited as much as possible throughout our stay starting with a drive out to Redgorton and Luncarty in Perthshire. We accidentally dropped into Luncarty Football Club whilst looking for the War Memorial and was welcomed wholeheartedly by President of the club Jim Meiklejohn. He appeared to be busy doing odd jobs in preparation for the forthcoming pre-season training. Jim showed us around the clubhouse and dressing rooms and out to the pitch. The changing rooms were now ready for home and visiting players alike. Jim seemed to love the football club and must be a credit to the community of Luncarty. There are obviously more people in the background who we didn't meet but good luck to Jim and Luncarty FC and I will look out for their results.

Scone Palace was our next visit, once the crowning site of the Kings of Scotland and then onto the north side of the Tay to Dundee. We picked out an address or two that I wanted to find for my ancestral interest then back to Clayton stopping off at Tayport beforehand.

At Clayton, we had many a laugh with Jeanette who works on the site making the caravans spotless for the next visitor.

Obviously a day around St Andrews was in our plans, peeping through the gates at St Andrews United Junior FC at Recreation Park formed in 1920 and for the first time a drive up to Aberdeen. This proved to be disappointing as the mist was thick and low throughout the day making a view of the countryside and coastline impossible. We did find another ancestral address and accidentally dropped on the Pittodrie Stadium, home of The Dons where a visit to the club shop was a must. There was excitement in the air as at 12.30pm, half an hour away, was the announcement of a new signing. Again I had looked at the pitch through locked gates as I find it interesting to see the preparation and imagine a game being played.

Our usual day around Dundee, Broughty Ferry where the weather was glorious and a day about Falkland. A walk about the peaceful village of Collessie, up to Newburgh with a late lunch by the Tay, and the ruins of Balmerino Abbey, a 13th century Cistercian monastery founded by Monks from Melrose. There is a honesty box at the entrance where you can purchase your own leaflet and it is now cared for by the National Trust for Scotland.

Incidentally, we spoke to someone out walking the country road out of Newburgh who proudly told us that it was the last town in Fife before Perth, God's city.

So it was an interesting varied week of news. Sadly two jets had collided over the Moray Firth with loss of life, that played on our thoughts, decision time for Rangers and Andy Murray made the Wimbledon final.

Here's to everyone participating, organising, sponsoring or a spectator in anything mentioned in my story and poem.

My final thoughts are with the families of the RAF Tornado jet pilots.

The Bonnie Lassies Danced at the Cupar Highland Games
© Robbie Kennedy Bennett


In My Blood, by Robbie Kennedy Bennett on Scotland's Enchanted Kingdom. This and a short detailed account plus other odes about Fife. Featured since 2008;

Featured poet on Poetry of Scotland since 2006;

Football Poets / Robbie Kennedy Bennett;

Wolverhampton wanderer muses on coastal path

An Ode To Hugh, Devotion In Rhyme;

Welcome to the writings of Robbie Kennedy Bennett, on Collessie.... a great place to live.

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RKB poetry since 1989