Div Ye Mine – Elma Coull née Wilson

Div Ye Mine


(Click on photos to enlarge)


Div ye mine fin Emry Ross had his workshop in the square,

If yer bike or paraffin lamp went wrang ye got it fixed in there

Johnny Duncan at the corner ran the draper’s wi brother Jack

Wi a the latest fashions fae lang drawers tae a fancy hat


Div ye mine fin the toon hall wis a picture hoose, the only ane in the toon

The highlight o a Saterday nicht wis fin the film projector broke doon

Sometimes it wis cowboys and Indians an aye the Pathé news

The 3 Stoogies or old mother Riley and whistling Peter controlling the queues




Div ye mine on Petrie the butcher wi the sawdust on the fleer

He was famous for his haggis, customers came from far and near

Cocky Benny had a little grocer’s shop at the fit o the Shilling Hill

His son Russell served at the coonter and he could fair mak a piano dirl


Div ye min on the outside dry lavies, a wooden shed up in the garden

Off ye went wi a newspaper an used the pages after you read them

Around about the rhubarb grew it niver needed manure

Ye got it fae yer denner wi custard, it was a great laxative, that wis for sure




Div ye mine Bill McKay the janitor and George Wilson wi the school denner van

Mr Morris he wis the headmaister, Alex Bomber was the PE man

Misses Joss, McDonald, Forbes and Brown, they were the Primary four

We got a bottle of milk wi a straw fae a crate at the classroom door


Div ye mine the open air theatres, the fancy dress parades on the streets

The side shows doon a the Wally Green organised by father Copeland the Priest

The charity football matches were held in the playing park

The women dressed up in the fitba strip, the men were in drag for a lark




Abody mines the swimming pool, the galas on a Sunday afterneen

Davidson’s van wi loudspeakers on top and the biggest crowds you’ve ever seen

Thanks to Danny Sutherland and Mr John McLeod

Portsoy was famous for its swimmers, for their dedication was second to none




Div ye mine on Andra Mairs chip shop, Betty and Bill Barron sane jist up the street

Willie Riddoch’s and Jim Taylor’s for ice cream, Annie Hocchie’s for a selection of sweets

Auld Bob Gray wi his horse and gig rode through the toon when he got fu

He had the dairy on Cullen Street where ye got milk fresh oot o the coo


Div ye mine in the Seatown there wis Jeannie the shoppie, McRobie’s on the Culbert Rig

Robbie Milne’s shoe shop and Bennet the barber, then up to the Institute Hall for a jig

Sandy Mair and Ronnie Slter the coalmen, not forgetting Robertson the draper

Also John Donald and Edgar McBain, Sandy Bowman, they were the bakers




Div ye mine fin we gid sledging fae Cullen Street to the cemetery brae

Makin stumps wi syrup tns and gan tae Aberdeen on the train for a day

Dear old Mrs gillan forgive me, if you can, for every time I passed your door I rang your bell and ran

Catchin bandies at the station burn, oot on wir bikes div ye min

Rumbling spoots and pinchin apples you’ll min, cause I mine fine


Div ye mine fin we wis bairns we had syrup tins for stilts

Skippen ropes and boolies and dookin at the Links

Catchin bandies wi a jeely jar in the burn a the Wally Green

Fishin at the Doonie wi a string and a safety preen

Div ye mine wearin navy knickers, and loons wore breeks abeen their knees

We wore a hame wiven wissett socks and coty perkies that aye smelt o cheese

Elsie Roy’s cookery classes where we learn ti bile an egg

Jim Ritchie teachin woodwork, makin a table wi a bandy leg



Auld Mrs Murray at the dairy, they were a family team

We loved to watch the coos bein milked and the bottles topped up wi cream

Bob Murray’s loon, young Robert, wis something to remember

Herdin the coos along the street, a proper little fairmer

He must’ve been only four year auld, as he wisna at the school

A cape on his heid and his wellie boots, thank god he wisna herdin a bull


The reverend Montgomery came to toon and took the young anes aff the street

He opened up teh auld kirk hall and geve them a place to meet

Saturday nicht dances, music and sports, he niver let us doon

The kirk has niver been the same since Monty left the toon


Div ye mine the local taxis wi Johnny and Dicky Gray

Maggie Elsie sellin fish, and walkin miles every day

The shoemakers wis Laird, Patty Hay, Jimmy Hendry and Robbie Milne

If ye had a hole in yer sole, they were the men wi the skill




Father Copeland he wis the catholic priest and my wis he a gem

Takin part in everything and wis welcome in every hame

Whistlin Babbie had a monkey when she bade on teh Culbert Rig

I mine its name wis Jippy and it wisna very big

The Mittens fae Gloves Close? Noo hiv I got ye there?

Also Marie Louise and Dodie fae the fish shop on the square

Granny Leebies hoosie stands there at the shore

Dick and Mary Kelbie and their family bade next door

The Duncans and the Georges they had the Shore Inn pub

Alkie Tonio wis aye aroon tae smoke a the woodbine stubs





2 Responses to Div Ye Mine – Elma Coull née Wilson

  1. Great poem and well illustrated. Thanks

  2. Maureen Deans

    Elma was in my class at school before she died she got in touch with me threw this Facebook Portsoy Past@Presant She remembered when we used to jink school and go to my mams Jessie Ann and get something to eat when my mither was at the tatties But unknown to us they had been rained off I got in trouble

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