Corstorphine Sycamore

The Lord of Corstorphine, a drunken philanderer
neglected the family estates,
flew into a rage and attacked his love
with a sword that she wrested from him.
She killed him and fled
but was caught and hung
dressed in a hood of white.

White Lady wailing, haunted Corstorphine’s sycamore,
blood on the blade of the sword
with which she had slain her lord.
She wailed with the wind on Boxing Day Night,
the night of the terrible storm.
Four hundred years of tree and ghost
brought to a splintering end.

There was no treasure at the roots of the tree
but the wood was dried and preserved.
In the hands of a craftsman, the legend restored
took the shape of a violin.
On moonlit nights, when the fiddler plays
the white lady wails once more
and the sycamore lives again.

By Juliet Wilson

Edinburgh based blogger, Juliet Wilson is a writer, conservation volunteer and adult education tutor (teaching creative writing and leading birdwatching walks). Her first poetry chapbook Bougainvillea Dancing raised money for charities working in Malawi. Her second chapbook Unthinkable Skies was published in 2010 by Calder Wood Press. A selection of the poems from Unthinkable Skies is also available as a CD with musical accompaniment from Edinburgh musical project Belvedere Mountain Express. She is currently working on her first novel.

Juliet has read her poetry and short stories at various venues, most recently at Foakies at the Royal Oak, Edinburgh; Story Shop at the Edinburgh International Book Festival and Havers and Blethers at Captain's Bar, during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Juliet has had several haiku, longer poems and short stories published online and in UK and USA journals.

Juliet is available for readings and as a workshop tutor (on topics including nature studies, creative writing and social media).

You may visit her blog at