Son of Esarg
the axe-thrower, smelting and pin-lining coasts
with bronze whirls, smoothed by Macha’s shawl.
Forger of tools, lately found half-sunk in peat
in a depthless bog, with his elbow crooked upward. The gases
preserved his jacket, the raised sinew
on his small finger, and the blazoned buckle he himself fashioned.
Blood-guzzling brother,
in your black and swollen hands were held and formed
the precious things of our people—silver arms, jeweled stones,
shields which took as their sigils
the names of longer-dead folk, who saw these fens
and montane cliffs with new eyes in the fog. Green and white,
you decked yourself in imitation of the landscape, spangled
red as the first tang of human blood spoiled.
We are now half as young as you were then,
and can only see a vague prophecy in the curves of your embellished helmet.
History is the massive magnet
above us, riding like fertile Gavlen over the brawn brewer.

Photo by Tim Cooper on Unsplash

Nick Roberts

Nick Roberts is a 25-year old poet, academic, and researcher from Boston, Massachusetts. His work has been previously featured in La Piccioletta Barca, Black Horse Review, Iris, and The Bangalore Review. He studied at UMass Boston, where he received his BA and MA in English, focusing on Old English and the poetry of Charles Olson. He currently lives in Dorchester with his partner, dog, and many books, and teaches at Suffolk University.