Lion of Scotland by Stewart Conn
granite carving by Ronald Rae
Its supple marriage of muscularity and grace
first envisaged at Tillyfourie Quarry
where the workers believed they could trace
an imprint in a block of Corrennie granite,
this 20-tonne stone transported to Cramond
and worked on for over a year: the sculptor
inspired as never before – detecting a gift
from the gods, the culmination of his career.
Now regal brow and mane, curved
flank, rippling haunch and great paw
are invested by hammer and chisel
with the spirit and dignity of lion.
Symbolic energy source, its roseate
stippling vibrant in sun and rain, how fit
to front our new Parliament – looking out
on Arthur’s Seat, that other lion couchant.
Stewart Conn – Makar of Edinburgh 2002 – 2005