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A Glisk of Sun


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Selected works of 'Countrywoman' Bessie Skea.

George Mackay Brown Fellowship.


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The 20th century has made its mark on the Orkney landscape and way of life, but there is another Orkney, deeper and more elusive, and Bessie Skea had the rare ability to point the way there for others.

We find ourselves sharing the landscape around her house, sitting by the warmth of the stove, meeting her family. Two of her grandchildren, Sarah Jane Gibbon and Emma Grieve have collaborated in a new journey, marking the 100th anniversary of Bessie's birth with an anthology with with so many rich images that you will want to read each paragraph slowly and savour it and then read it again, and again, and each time you will have a feeling that something is being said on more than one level, that you are hearing echoes from another world.

You may have lived in Orkney all your life and want to picture again the images of a gurgling burn or dewy spider's web or a sleet-shower over a ploughed furrow; or you may have only read about the islands from the remarkable discoveries from their past and want to go deeper. There is a whole world to explore, in land and sea and sky.

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