IT'S been hard, it's been soft and it's certainly been controversial.

Now a Selkirk poet is taking Brexit to book by publishing no fewer than 99 poems about the planned EU divorce.

Creative writing graduate Ian Cheyne, who has published his Br**it Balloons under the pseudonym Will B Justice, hopes his stanzas and couplets will shine a fresh light on one of the country's longest-running sagas.

Among the many recipients of his anthology are Boris Johnson and nearer to home Sir David Steel.

The semi-retired 72-year-old told us: "I was reading through the reasons why people voted for Brexit and among the many strange responses was one where they blamed the EU for Marathon chocolate bars being renamed Snickers.

"There were many other just as outrageous reasons and it got me thinking about our obligation to vote responsibly.

"I started on the process of writing poems to show just how stupid many of the reasons were for voting to leave the EU and, as part of my creative writing Masters, I progressed to publishing the book."

Ian, who has been a stalwart of both Selkirk Flute Band and Selkirk Opera in the past, moved from the Royal Burgh to Fraserburgh after his wife took up a deputy headteacher's post.

But he regularly returns to his roots and is currently searching for a home back in the town.

Since Ian began studying creative writing with the Open University in 2011, he has earned high praise - and marks - for his work.

And his light-hearted approach to the reasons we voted for Brexit has won him even more praise.

Ian added: "I have treated each reason for wanting Brexit according to its own merits.

"Some are serious, with varying degrees of innuendo and subtlety. Others are just plain silly, while a few are quietly pensive.

"People seem to enjoy Br**it Balloons and hopefully it will make them look at how we got here a wee bit differently."

Br**it Balloons was published by Bordersprint in Selkirk and is available from the town's Post Office as well as online.