Northwords Now

New writing, fresh from Scotland and the wider North
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Autumn 2017

Making tracks

HARRY GILES finds Orkney in Ontario, KIRSTY GUNN goes off the map, MANDY HAGGITH sails with an ancient mariner, MARTIN LEE MUELLER swims with salmon

Plus Short Stories, Poems, Articles, Reviews and new Gaelic writing

Editor: Kenny Taylor
Gaelic Editor: Rody Gorman


It’s great to get pleasant surprises. That’s been part of the fun of editing Northwords Now in the last few months. I can seldom predict just what stories or poetry will be pinging across to my inbox or what new collections, novels and more will be landing in the mailbox.Several of the submissions published in this issue are by writers whose work was previously unknown to me, but whose skill with words caught my attention and made me smile at the ways they could stretch imagination. That’s part of the function of this magazine, of course: to showcase new work and encourage fresh talent from across the north. But it’s also been great to get much support from weel-kent figures in the Scottish literary scene, keen to say how much they value Northwords Now. Some of these writers have provided new work for this issue.I hope the mix of names, styles of writing and subjects printed here will give others both food for thought, enjoyment – and perhaps an urge to submit their own work for possible publication in a future issue. Writing from people living in or inspired by the Highlands and Islands is given prominence, but I’m also keen to see material linked to the wider north. That includes both other parts of Scotland and places around the northern world.

With that geographical sweep in mind, I’m pleased that this issue includes writing drawn from experiences in northern Japan and Canada and by writers based in Norway and Finland. I hope you enjoy the mix.

Kenny Taylor, Editor

Issue 34 Index
Returning to the BayEssay by Harry Giles
I’m Coming With You Review by Anne MacLeod
All The Prayers In The HouseReview by Ian Stephen
Unspeakable Review by Cynthia Rogerson
Alexander Gardner - Visionary Photographer of the American Civil WarReview by Kenny Taylor
HerringbonePoem by Larissa Reid
The Crow RoadPoem by Larissa Reid
Skye-light Poem by Larissa Reid
Of Snow, and Ice SculptedStory by Rónán MacDubhghaill
Song for a TsarPoem by Donald S Murray
The ExecutionerStory by Mike Dixon
GrannyStory by Tristan ap Rheinnalt
MoBStory by David McVey
The Sea is a Time MachineEssay by Mandy Haggith
The Night VisitorStory by Duncan MacInnes
The Attic CallsPoem by Ryan van Winkle
The SoundPoem by Howard Wright
The Speed of LightPoem by Barry Graham
She only Came to DancePoem by Ian Tallach
At the leibrarie Poem by Hamish Scott
Lumi – SnowPoem by Gerry Stewart
Young Mortality Poem by Helen Boden
CastlebayPoem by Helen Boden
Flanders MossPoem by David Stakes
Walking on Air in Gannet Slippers Poem by Stephanie Green
Euphemia MacCrimmondPoem by Stephanie Green
The Boat Cold Poem by Stephanie Green
I tell my husband I am pregnant and he sets out to make a tiny coffin (1891)Poem by Stephanie Green
I might as well be a widow (1900) Poem by Stephanie Green
The Leaving of St Kilda (1930) Poem by Stephanie Green
RamPoem by Graham Turner
EwesPoem by Graham Turner
UpkeepPoem by Graham Turner
AttendantPoem by Nancy Graham
Flora, RisingPoem by Nancy Graham
Outsider WalkingEssay by Kirsty Gunn
EightPoem by Karin Slater
AnnouncementPoem by Karin Slater
NestPoem by Juliet Antill
I Am The Wind StillingPoem by Juliet Antill
Quines at SeaStory by Shane Strachan
Being Salmon, Being HumanEssay by Martin Lee Mueller
Gynack Spate 2012Poem by Scott Fraser
Lapwing CentralPoem by Leonie Charlton
Of Loneliness, and OrangesStory by Alison Bell
UnspokenStory by Rachel Horsburgh
Grammar of Wavelength Exhibition & WaypointsReview by Jon Miller
The Finest Road in the World by James Miller Review by Roy Pedersen
Slavonic Dances: Mrs Makarowski, The Kilt, The Carrying Stream by Tom HubbardReview by Jane Verburg
My Father As an Ant & Other Stories by Diana HendryReview by Cynthia Rogerson
You Know What You Could Be by Mike Heron & Andrew GreigReview by Cynthia Rogerson
Border By Kapka KassabovaReview by Stephen Keeler
Dìblidheachd Mhic an Duine*Poem by Alasdair Caimbeul
Seachain am beòPoem by Maoilios Caimbeul
A’ fònadhPoem by Maoilios Caimbeul
A’ cuimhneachadhPoem by Maoilios Caimbeul
Am fàidhPoem by Maoilios Caimbeul
Air m’ aineolPoem by Maoilios Caimbeul
SìodaPoem by Pàdraig Macaoidh
Nàdar dePoem by Pàdraig Macaoidh
Na Cumhaichean as Fheàrr airson an Dàn seo a Leughadh Poem by Pàdraig Macaoidh
Bàgh na Pàirce BàinePoem by Iain S Mac a’ phearsain
fo sgòdPoem by Iain S Mac a’ phearsain
dà phoit bhigPoem by Iain S Mac a’ phearsain
Canada I - a’ cur fòn gu Dòmhnall o Thràigh an t-SìtheinPoem by Eòghan Stiùbhart
Canada II - 92:10Poem by Eòghan Stiùbhart
Canada III - Fon Choill’Poem by Eòghan Stiùbhart
Canada IV - LibheadainPoem by Eòghan Stiùbhart
Canada V - A’ togail càrn am measg nan inukshukPoem by Eòghan Stiùbhart
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