Meet Me in the Birch Wood

Acrylics on card, 42x30cm.

Meet me in the Birch Wood
Where the leaves are fa’ing doon,
One efter the other
An’ strewan a’ aroun’.

Orange and yellow wi’ bright red stalks
They litter the emerald green
Like confetti at our waddin’,
Discarded at the scene.

Ye’ll need tae wrap up warm now
An’ pit oan yer strippit scarf,
Fur there’s a snell wind blawin’
Ower the cauld dark earth.

Leave the Chanel in the closet
And pull on those long black Skinnys.
And fur-lined boots are the answer
Tae keep attached yer minnies.

For winter is almost upon us
With early falls of snow.
And frosty mornings whiten the grun
After starry black nights below.

Meet me where the Long-tailed Tits
And tiny Coals and Blue,
Pick their way through the high canopy
Of rowan and dark green yew.

Searching in every nook
For grubs to sustain them tight
In huddled roosts in sheltered cranny
Through the long dark night.

Don’t disappoint me my darling
For I need to see you once more,
To ask if you could ever still love me
Like you did wance ‘afore.


Shady Grove

Acrylics on canvas, 46x61cm.

Cheeks as red as the blooming rose, eyes of the deepest brown,
You are the darling of my heart, stay till the sun goes down.

Shady Grove my little love, Shady Grove my dear.
Shady Grove my little love, I’m going to leave you here.

Shady Grove my little love, standing at the door,
Shoes and stockin’s in her hand and her little bare feet on the floor.

Wisht I had a big fine horse, corn to feed him on,
Pretty little girl stay at home, feed him when I’m gone.

Shady Grove my little love, Shady Grove I say,
Shady Grove, my little love,
Don’t wait till Judgement Day.

I learned this traditional Appalachian mountain-song at High School (Rutherglen Academy) Ballads Club under tutelage of Norman Buchan, my English teacher. This version is from a boys point of view unlike the version linked here by Shelly Colvin live at Music City Roots at the Loveless Café in Nashville. Don’t know who her guitarist is but he sure does a fine job on that gee-tar!

Original charcoal sketch inspirations:


Drawing in the Dark

Just returned from a fantastic weekend in sunny Dumfries for the first ever Ukulele Festival of Scotland.

What a great festival: brilliant venue (Easterbrook Hall and Crichton Church), effectively organised, and the diversity and standard of all the bands/individuals was superb. Well done to Linda and Stewart Butterworth (co-festival Directors) for all their organisation. Looking forward already to doing it all again next year.

Rather than just sit passively in awe at what some people can do with a ukulele, however, I like to take advantage of the parade of figures in front of me for a bit of people drawing (I won’t call it “Life Drawing” for there was no one actually naked. Not that I saw anyway :o)

The challenge is to catch something of the performers:  a) from a distance with the wummin in front and her big buffoned hairdo keeping leaning over to whisper in the lug of her paramour, b)when the musicians keep diving about as the music takes them, c) the house lights are down and I’m using guesswork to a fair degree, and d) the effects of that dinner wine is still having it’s wicked way with me.

Here’s a small sampler:

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Zahra Lowzley was playing what she called her “alien” uke.

The Mersey Belles (cousins Pearl and Nancy) who were much more lively and entertaining than my rather static sketch suggests.

Brothers Tim & Jake Smithies of Dead Mans Uke so named after yer actual resonator ukulele which belonged to Tiny Tim.

Sarah Kelly who not only won the New Performers Competition but must also get the prize for best dressed uker with her coifed hair and long pink frock.

Finally, I should mention the brilliant (in more ways than one) compère Paul L Martin who was got up like a Circus Master of Ceremonies with his red coat and top hat so much so that I simply couldn’t do him justice. Gay as the Lanark Lanimer Day bunting he kept us all well amused!

New Website

It’s been a busy summer with little in the way of art being done but much in the way of music, gardening, grandchildren and holidays.

Now, as the nights draw in, at long last I have finally got around to finishing my new website (with the help of 1&1) and publishing it today.

David Cornelius Drawing&Painting

The Astronomers

The Astronomers

If the above link didn’t work you can try it here: