War poems of Southern’s former editor back in print

David Mackie.
David Mackie.

A booklet of poems by a long-time editor of the Southern Reporter has been republished to commemorate the start of the Great War.

David Mackie was in the editor’s chair from 1925 until his death in 1956.

In 1916, aged 25, he penned a series of war poems while recuperating from a serious illness contracted while serving in Flanders.

They were published that same year under the title Bandolier & Bandages and sold in aid of the Red Cross.

Now his daughter, Davina Morrison, who was born when her dad was 51, has had the booklet reprinted by Bordersprint Ltd, of Selkirk.

In the book’s foreword, she states: “It was some time after his death, when mother and I were sorting through my father’s many books in the attic, that I became familiar with his earlier works, including Bandolier & Bandages. Now, 100 years on from the start of that terrible war ... it seems appropriate to share the still-sharp observations and emotions expressed by father.”

When war broke out he was a junior reporter on a newspaper in Carlisle, but he quit and enlisted with the Lothians and Border Horse.