Northwords Now

New writing, fresh from Scotland and the wider North
Sgrìobhadh ùr à Alba agus an Àird a Tuath

editor@northwordsnow.co.uk Twitter Facebook Search

Bow-head whale

by Mandy Haggith

Two humps of peace on an ocean of ice:
head bump – a modest mountain,
behind it a ridge.

A flow as the head rises,
a gentle puff of exhaled air,
a murmuring blow.

Among the congregation
we might as well have said ‘Amen’
to the emergence of a deity.

Cameras and glasses of devotion
rise in reverence
fall in supplication.

You make no popish gesture,
merely nod your huge head,
return to the deep.

Big behemoth
fellow traveller on the whale-road
we greet you.

How many years have you swum
at your monk-like pace
among this ice?

You could teach us
things we will never learn
as long as we keep scurrying on,

burning,
burning.

The Board and Editor of Northwords Now acknowledge support from Creative Scotland and Bòrd na Gàidhlig.
ISSN 1750-7928 - Print Design by Gustaf Eriksson - Website by Plexus Media