Fly Fishing People: Poet Norman MacCaig

November 9, 2010 By: Marshall Cutchin

The prolific Scottish poet Norman MacCaig was a celebrated teacher, concientious objector and naturalist. He’s been called “the great love poet of the natural world.” This week the BBC celebrates MacCaig on his centenary of his birth, and Aly Bain, who had a long friendship with MacCaig, writes at length about the poet and his personality.
“We used to talk a lot about fly fishing and hill walks. We compared stories and flies and lochs and weather and frost and clouds. He wrote poems about them and I played fiddle tunes about them. However, I never went fishing with him. This BBC Scotland film is my homage to him going fishing.” In The Scotsman.
A small sample of MacCaig’s poetry:
The beneficent lights dim
but don’t vanish.
The razory edges
dull, but still cut.
He’s gone:
but you can see
his tracks still, in the snow of the world