Our Pet Dog Tar 1981-1997
Tara came to join us in 1981
A pal to all our children, and theirs in turn I tell
She loved to get into the car, but her behaviour was outrageous
She was a lovely lady, gave love in generous lumps
This happy soul will never leave, she left so much to share
Lament for Sea Lions
The sea lions are leaving the zoo!
What I like About Winter
What I like about winter is home made soup
Nicole Carter was born in Edinburgh in 1975 and spent most of her childhood living in Penicuik, dancing, running, playing in mud and climbing trees. She has worked as a kitchen porter, an outdoor activities Instructor, fitness class instructor and personal trainer, waitress, shop assistant and office administrator for a large pensions company. Nicole has also worked in several voluntary jobs which she found to be very rewarding.
Having a Bi-polar disorder, as it is now fashionably known, has made life “difficult but interesting”, with several periods of homelessness and subsequent admissions to psychiatric hospitals. She has had several articles about her printed in newspapers, some of which aren’t entirely accurate.
For Unlawful Canal Knowledge
I can’t afford to eat this week again. My benefits have been stopped for several weeks because I got a job in a sports shop over the festive period but was fired after two weeks and my benefits haven’t been reinstated yet. Oh well at least I’ll lose a stone or two, but then the gnawing pain in my stomach, the paranoia, voice and the hallucinations are not ideal. I was given some tinned food from a mental health charity because it’s Christmas but I didn’t have a can opener so couldn’t open the tins. I was also given some shortbread, so I’ve eaten some of that but I’m keeping some to use as bait to catch a pigeon. I’ve worked with chickens before on the Cyrenian Farm homeless hostel and I imagine it’s pretty much the same with pigeons. We used to have to catch the chickens to spray them to prevent mites. On my way through the Wester Hailes Plaza precinct one day, I see a flock of pigeons and crumble some of the shortbread on the ground in front of me, crouch down and wait….
The pigeons in Wester Hailes are dirty with not much meat on them but they’ll have to do. There’s plenty of them pecking around at some cold foosty chips someone else had thrown at them. One comes close and starts pecking at the crumbs. I stay completely still…it gets closer…I quickly grab it putting my hands firmly over its wings to stop it flapping about and quickly break its neck by twisting firmly. A woman standing at the bus-stop screams, I hold up the poor limp bird and shout ‘I didn’t get a crisis loan!!’
Back at the flat I pluck the bird and excavate the little bit of breast meat, fry it up and eat. In certain restaurants, with a small portion of wilted greens, lightly drizzled with truffle oil, this would be haute cuisine but for me it’s much needed protein and all I’ll have until my benefits are reinstated. I’ll never kill another poor wee pigeon. I couldn’t go through the deep feelings of guilt it would cause ever again, but then maybe I’ll have to in future. I think I’ll do more survival training just in case. I’ll draw the line at squirrels, they are too cute to kill. Maybe I could poach a duck from the canal, that would be marginally more morally acceptable, wouldn’t it?
Ah dinnae ken whar ma heid is goin
Some say ahm a “diasaffected youth”
But aw ah ken is ahm scunnered
Ah cannae identify wi ma teacher
When ma family and freends
Speak a different tongue
Scots is what it is
Whars the shame in that
Ahm no stupid ahm no daft
It’s jist thit the meely-moothed
mak me laugh
noo ahm no a racist
ahm no a bigot
ahm jist proud o ma heritage
Ah wiz brought up wi pride
ma Ma an’ Da were the same
So gies a brek
Gies some slack
Ahm as canny as the next yin
It’s no intelligence ah lack
© Nicole Carter 2010