Antony Gormley ‘6 Times’

Antony Gormley in the Water of Leith

Nick McKinnon

Fàilte gu Alba: one had found himself
sunk to his metal chuckies in a pool,
his bawbag scrumpled up like microwaved

cling film; one enjoyed a willow-shaded
standing threesome, leaving his rusty stains
smeared on the tie-side skimpies of two girls

from Pilrig Heights; and one had drunk a pint
in every pub down Junction Street the day
a fortnight’s rain poured on the Old Town slate

in half an hour, burbled along the rones
of colonies, flashed off peripheral schemes
and basalt crags into the rifled gorge,

greeting the iron men like a Dundee train
ramming the Waverley buffers. Gormley’s
doppelgangers didn’t have a prayer: one

toppled sideways at Bells Mills and felt
the crush of driftwood clinging to his thighs
ease like a bladder sphincter that’s been held

right through the second half at Easter Road
and into extra time; another knelt
above the caramel spate near Bonnington

and parting the muscled torrent expertly
went down on the alluvium; the third,
reclined by Powderhall, smoked cigarettes

while Venus sidled up to Jupiter,
counted the Ryanairs and Easyjets
hauling their pallid Fifers out of Turnhouse,

and witnessed helplessly a tawdry show
of northern lights tarnish the tramless city’s
sodium dome with shimmering verdigris.


Antony Gormley and one of his figures from ‘6 Times’ outside the Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh

Nick MacKinnon is a teacher of Maths and English.
He has been runner-up in the 2009 Bridport and 2010 Edwin Morgan; in 2012 Claybury won the Hippocrates prize and The Surrey Tiger won Poetry on the Lake.

Antony Gormley’s 6 Times.
6 Times, a sculptural project by the celebrated British artist Antony Gormley and commissioned by the National Galleries of Scotland, comprises six life-size figures positioned between the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the sea. Four of the figures are sited in the Water of Leith, acting as gauges for the height of the river as it swells and recedes. This is the first time that a work in the National Galleries collection has been permanently located across the city of Edinburgh itself

Mckinnon-Gormley  Mckinnon-Gormley 
Mckinnon-Gormley  Mckinnon-Gormley 
Antony Gormley ‘6 Times’