The Sauchs in the Reuch Heuch Hauch

By Hugh MacDiarmid 1892–1978 Hugh MacDiarmid

(For George Reston Malloch)

There’s teuch sauchs growin’ i’ the Reuch Heuch Hauch.   
Like the sauls o’ the damned are they,
And ilk ane yoked in a whirligig
Is birlin’ the lee-lang day.

O we come doon frae oor stormiest moods,
And Licht like a bird i’ the haun’,
But the teuch sauchs there i’ the Reuch Heuch Hauch   
As the deil’s ain hert are thrawn.

The winds ’ud pu’ them up by the roots,
Tho’ it broke the warl’ asunder,
But they rin richt doon thro’ the boddom o’ Hell,   
And nane kens hoo fer under!

There’s no’ a licht that the Heavens let loose   
Can calm them a hanlawhile,
Nor frae their ancient amplefeyst
Sall God’s ain sel’ them wile.

Hugh MacDiarmid, “The Sauchs in the Reuch Heuch Hauch” from Selected Poetry. Copyright © 1992 by Alan Riach and Michael Grieve. Reprinted with the permission of New Directions Publishing Corporation.

Source: Complete Poems (Grove/Atlantic Inc., 1993)

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Hugh MacDiarmid 1892–1978



Subjects God & the Divine, Landscapes & Pastorals, Trees & Flowers, Religion, Nature

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Hugh  MacDiarmid


C. M. Grieve, best known under his pseudonym Hugh MacDiarmid, is credited with effecting a Scottish literary revolution which restored an indigenous Scots literature and has been acknowledged as the greatest poet that his country has produced since Robert Burns. As a writer, political theorist, revolutionary, prophet, and multifaceted personality, he was a man to be reckoned with, even by those who did not agree that he was one . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT God & the Divine, Landscapes & Pastorals, Trees & Flowers, Religion, Nature



Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.