the watershed

th’ fleety wud, a place-aware mapping of the Upper Teviot watershed from the source at Teviot Stone to the Rule Water. The blog combines tributree drawings of tributaries of the Teviot with texts from the forthcoming book.

model of consciousness


unique vascular pattern

fixed arrangement of nouns
in constant motion

a watershed is an imperative:
which way will you flow?

each watershed has one length
and a wide variety of widths


take the arboreal form of the watershed as a hint

rivers are syntax
hills are grammar

the climate crisis is a watershed

if you neglect your watershed then be prepared 
to heap sandbags

you can walk up or down the river, like a ladder,
from confluence to confluence

the waters are so nearly alike in their differences

the valleys open and they have a river before them

the rivers joint:

a confluence is a focal point
and a vocal point 

the water flows past its confluence without
any sense of attachment

some walk the watershed by confluences
others go to the source of every tributary

th’ fleety wud 
alec finlay with gill russell, 2017

the project will culminate in a publication in Autumn 2017

funded by Creative Scotland, and commissioned by the Borders Heritage Festival (co-ordinated/supported by CABN)

with thanks to Douglas Scott, Kate McAllan, Maggie Scott, Andrew McKenzie, Jenna Corcoran, Mary Morrison, Claire Pencak, and Paul Brough.


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