Northwords Now Issue 36

The FREE literary magazine of the North


by Maxine Rose Munro

(Originally an innocent term for incomers in a time when such were few, it has come to be seen as derogatory)
From where we stood back then,
the whole damn globe was south.
It felt good to be able to label near
everything with one word, three
syllables. A simple partitioning
of here/not here - worlds lay
at our feet, none above us.
Bedrock northern facts told
us who we were, tempered
in gales of cold
                When it was things
                                   I don't know,
ground once solid became slippery
underfoot we fell scrabbled for
purchase on perfidious rubble
and when it stopped there we were -
wide open plains. Outwith insularity.
We had lost our way and I found
myself wondering if where we
had stood was everything
we thought it had been.