Iain Campbell

In the steps of Gagarin

Iain Campbell

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The rooftops, all jumbled ridges and shuffled ranks,

their chimneys stacked, extinct and still;

on edge, they stand out like blackened, broken teeth

against a sky of melting burnished brass,

where charcoal stains streak and smudge the chasing night.

While far above, suspended in her own indigo

see the evening star, a distant garret light,

so bright, so small, so constant.


Then her twin, I might suppose,

tracing a slow and steady arc,

man’s hopeful step to catch the stars.

A spacecraft chasing Orion;

so small, so bright, so transient;

a ship set in space, and a crew who sails her,

navigating their solitary path

across heaven’s oceans, almost every hour.


Iain Campbell


Iain hated poetry at school but has since changed his mind.  His poems are inspired by his love of the landscape and the sea, often intertwined with a tale of someone he has met, or of a journey he has undertaken.  He has had poems published in a number of journals including the Blue Nib, Dreich Poetry chapbooks, the Bangor Literary Journal and the Honest Ulsterman. He was a recipient in 2020 of an ACNI SIAP grant and is currently working towards his first anthology.