There is an uncanny resemblance to Tony Blair and the finely sculptured bird of prey glaring down at us from the plinth of the Melville Monument in St Andrews Square, Edinburgh.

Tony Blair’s Butterfly Effect

Having glided smoothly upwards –

Up. . .!

And up . . !

And up . . !

Behold, Tony Blair standing where he should be –

poised sixty years and more above

the city of his birth.

Time enough for down-soft feathers to have stiffened

into archangel-strength wings,

time to curve himself a profile

of absolute conviction, take on

a gaze of stone-hard sincerity.

Set so high above the rest of us, he hears

God whisper to him,


Any moment now, the ex-PM might feel the need to stretch.


Tony Blair’s butterfly effect – when these wings beat,

distant city walls tumble,

men, women and children die.

from Magicians Of Scotland (Polygon, 2015), © Ron Butlin 2015, used by permission of the author

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