Your memories: 'The smell was enough to make me boak'

'Mum sent me 'Doon the Kirkgate' to buy a wee sheep's bag, and the smelling when going in the shop, it nearly made me gag.

So with my fingers held tight to my nose, I whispered to the man, 'I want to buy a sheep's bag', just as quietly as a lamb.

Then as I ran home with them neath my arm, I saw some people stare, the juice had dripped all down my pants, and I smelled just like my ware.

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When I took the bags into the house, without a 'Whaur hiv ye been?' my mother put them in the sink and scraped the tripe all clean.

Then as she cut it into squares and put them in a pot, she added lots of onions; she stewed a tripe 'ragout'.

As the smell went reeking through the hoose, it was enough to make me boak, and my stomach turned all queasy; tripe was not for weak-kneed folk.

Then when mother dished it up to me, at dinner time next day, my face went red, my stomach turned, but not a word I'd say.

For if I did, as sure as heck I'd only hear her prattle, so I with eyes tight shut, I held my nose and spooned it doon ma thrapple."

nTripe for Dinner, by Peter Sellar, is one of 94 entries to appear in Lyrical Poems of Leith: Life in the Port in the mid-20th Century.

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The new book is compiled by John Stewart, webmaster of, and is priced 5.

Peter Sellar grew up in Leith and Newhaven but eventually emigrated to Canada. Now in his mid-70s, he lives in Mississauga, Ontario.

To order a copy of the book, visit the website or call 01506- 491 446.