Northwords Now

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

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Day of the Last Star

by Howard Wright

Andromeda Galaxy, as seen from Kattfjord, northern Norway - Erling Sverre Nordøy
Andromeda Galaxy, as seen from Kattfjord, northern Norway - Erling Sverre Nordøy

The last day has taken a million years, just about,
and we can stand in our trenchcoats
of infinite knowledge, our celebratory hats.
Hindsight is a marvellous thing.

At this extremity, home to us, whatever ‘us’
has become, we can watch the last star shut down,
switch off, close the door. Life has become death
and we, whoever ‘we’ are, will die alone.

A thousand billion years – God, we now know,
has been away all the time, relaxing, lost
to his Alzheimer synapse. He doesn’t even know
who ‘he’ is anymore. We toast our hands

and crumble. A final glimmer – no ghosts, no time,
only our wasted breath on this little crumpled rock.
This is what it means to survive without regret,
one with the void, its intractable mind,

the universe of naught, the one last thought
from this absolute spot could do no worse
than be there was a point, that the effort
to start again, from scratch, might be worth it.

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