Norn Broser - The Norn Rebel

Folekar laga mål min ikke livandi 
Eg er broser. BODA!
Norn ikke missa!
Norn ikke kasten!
Norn dað hever mog. 

Jift mål min er blag og jardaði
hvatna agga eg i?
Norn du ert bulig.
Norn du ert bulig.
Eg er Norn!


People say my tongue does not exist
I am a rebel. YELL!
Norn is not lost!
Norn is not rejected!
Norn it has me. 

If my tongue is dead and buried
what do I protest in?
Norn you are healthy.
Norn you are healthy.
I am Norn!


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Surviving Life In a Parallel Universe

Examining the bubble of society that I have been fated to reside in, I look outward at the people around me, the cohort I have become part of, and then I examine the person I have become.

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Rebel Poet

Warning: this piece contains strong language

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We r i people

Ma legs were shakin’ under the table as the community hall filled tae capacity in front a mae. A wiz reminded a midnight mass in the seventies except that a wiz at the tap table, and the priest wiz among the congregation. This memory came back tae me as a read wan a the flyers blowin’ aroon’ the car park where the lock up garages wir bein’ demolished. "NO SHERIFF OFFICERS" wiz the bold message they told, n it star'l'd me ae think how long they'd been layin there undisturbed.

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Fair Fares

I was a young rebel aged 16. It was the early 1970’s and I had been interested in politics at school and joined a political party which I though best represented my views.

After being informed that I had been selected to go to a major conference in my home town of Glasgow, I chose to speak on a subject that was close to my heart: public transport.

The bus fares had been rising progressively for some time with no apparent improvements in the quality of service. I decided that radical, direct action was required to bring this to the forefront of political debate.

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Rebel Islander

The city offers work, a step up the ladder, a social life, and a wealth of distractions.
It is a place of opportunity and corporate interactions.
Millennials are told and told again.
I, on the other hand, rebelled.
I didn’t want to ‘get ahead’,
To commute, to pollute, to consume, to be subsumed by the noise, the want, and the desire.
A future of -
‘just another year renting’
‘just another year sharing’
‘just another year of a house that is not a home’
‘just another place that I will never belong’

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Rebel - Running across the road

When I  was a small boy I used to go out the door, out into the close, down the stairs, then out the front door and run across the road and sneak into our next door neighbour, Mick Forgrieve’s, van.

Sometimes I went into the front passenger seat or the driver’s seat or the back where the joiners’ tools were. I really liked that van and it drew me to it.

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Eulogy to the Seventies

You came very quietly…on the wake of flower-powered dreams…we hardly noticed…so exhausted were we from the razzmatazz of the pass eclectic “anything goes” decade. 

You came very quietly, swaying gently with prayer beads and mantras…”sit downs” and “stand ins” at all the major yokel vocal city squares…you catapulted us out of the swinging metallic space age glam glam psychedelic…seedy…buzzing “burn the institution” 60’s into a gentler rhythm…

And we who were beginning to see…turned on at last to a more transcendent view of the human dilemma…

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In 1976, no lang eftir colour TV arrived in Shetlan, I knitted twa allovers. Advised by my mam ta acquire some cheap, nylon-based oo fir dis project (a sign o her confidence both in my ability and attention span) I med a broon an cream, geometric-patterned jumper fir mesel, an a blue an white Norwegian Star patterned wan fir my bridder. I did dis on Monday nichts ower at my freend’s hoose. Sho knitted fir her boyfriend in shades o green ta match his een. Wid I ivver have a boyfriend ta knit fir?

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Mull, 1972

It rains a lot on Mull. It was pouring the day of my story. We’d just finished breakfast and our two young daughters, Avril and Jennifer, were doing puzzles in the window seat of our holiday cottage. Avril peered up the street through the curtain of rain and haar and said,

“There’s something funny happening outside the hotel.”

I came over to look. Sure enough there was a melee of men and dogs in the car park and I could hear voices raised in anger. The hotelier – a gentle, courteous man – seemed to be getting the worst of it. I called over my husband to watch.

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