Northwords Now

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

Abiding Sweetness

by Donald Adamson

It might have been a bend in the river
where they met, hunters from the north
and herdsmen from the south,
with hides and flesh for barter
till one day someone brought along
the sweet stuff he'd found
by following the bears who had a nose for it.

They jabbered, pointed and tasted
and were enraptured. Mm, Mm they moaned
then Me, Me, Me
before they had a name for it
then baby-like, finding a sound that suited,
they said ‘medhu’.

And so the word spread far and wide
and so it was the Anglo Saxons
marked life's joys
and sorrows with ‘mead’
and so it is just once I found
(most rare, secret and delicious)
a single shy dark red
Rubus arcticus
mesimarja, nectar berry.

Note: The word ‘medhu’ (honey) may be 6000 years old. It survives in Finnish as ‘mesi’, meaning ‘nectar’. It is not known which language invented the word originally.

Northwords Now acknowledges the vital support of Creative Scotland and Bòrd na Gàidhlig.
ISSN 1750-7928 - Print Design by Gustaf Eriksson - Website by Plexus Media