Northwords Now Issue 35

The FREE literary magazine of the North

Carnyx

Dedicated to John Purser and John Kenny

by David James Ross

They had gouged its eyes out
And torn out its brash tongue,
So when earth-mother parted wet lips
To receive their gift, all was silence.

Centuries passed, then in silence
The circle witnessed its rebirth,
Its bristled head, bog-swaddled,
Wide-eyed, mutely gasping for air.

In a mixture of awe and disgust,
The minister recorded its form,
Wondered about its heathen roots,
Before in silence they bore it away.

But now in a cave, dark as wet peat,
It fills its ancient lungs once more
And resumes roaring, snorting,
Bogling its primordial song.