Jul 042011
 

I lifted up skyward the crown of the faeries,
Tarnished by oceans of sea-crossing time.
Forged in the fire of golden-days dawning,
Lit with a halo of stars in the night.

Who now shall wear it? I wondered in silence
Una is resting with Duessa at play.
Gwenevere wanders in halls of forgetting,
Deep in the summer of dreaming this day.

On her feet sandals of gold, steps the princess,
Floating on air through the green garden grass,
Walking alone by the castle of ether,
Seen but unseen by the world through a glass.

The seal of the nether-world opened up freely;
Through the dark tunnel with reason behind,
Following meekly the one with a mission;
Perfect in will and a reader of signs.

Once past the stream of the guardian lizards,
On through the gate to the bright other place,
Land of reflection and fathomless knowledge,
Home elemental of alchemic race.

Where do we go? I looked left and then eastward,
Somehow forboding the place that I saw.
Life’s university, building of sandstone
Burnished and gleaming, a prison by law.

Silent, but knowing, did reason stand sweetly
Holder of mysteries, the teacher and guide.
Younger and wiser and older all-seeing,
Dressed up in white and demure by my side.

Then came a voice – and as if out of nowhere –
Do you need help, you seem lost in this realm?
There stood a faerie, bewitchingly golden
Silken and spun was her hair from the sun

Stepped forth the reason – seduced by her magic –
Stretched out a hand to her beautiful hair.
Won’t you come with me? The faerie enticed us,
Stop by the hearth of the potter this day...

Brooding I pondered, could faeries be trusted?
Should I be swayed from the pathway assigned?
Yet I had watched how my reason surrendered
So before airs of a beautiful kind….

Loathe to offend such a glorious being,
One who had offered with kindness and grace,
Help just when needed. I bowed to the faerie;
Take now your highness my reason away.

Then the wind changed as a wandering mistral,
Warm as the breeze on a meadow of wheat,
Swift, warm and golden the faerie-bird air-borne
Flew o’er myself that fell under her wing.

Passed by all time as I sailed down the sleep-stream,
Far to the land where the doe and stag graze.
Home to the garden that blooms East of Eden,
Land of the ancestors covered in praise.

Opened my eyes as I reached the cool garden
Wonder-filled, wide, as memories unfolded.
Looked up the stag and the doe from their incline,
Wakened my self from the river of time.

Safe in the knowledge of paradise tended,
Turned I my thought to the reason once lost.
So in a blink of my eye I went searching,
Straight to the hearth of the faerie-bird’s host.

Mar 022011
 

“I was the only son of my mother and father, and I was exceedingly aspiring, and my daring was very great. I thought there was no enterprise in the world too mighty for me, and after I had achieved all the adventures that were in my own country, I equipped myself, and set forth to journey through deserts and distant regions.

And at length it chanced that I came to the fairest valley in the world, wherein were trees of equal growth; and a river ran through the valley, and a path was by the side of the river. And I followed the path until mid-day, and continued my journey along the remainder of the valley until the evening; and at the extremity of a plain I came to a large and lustrous Castle, at the foot of which was a torrent.

And I approached the Castle, and there I beheld two youths with yellow curling hair, each with a frontlet of gold upon his head, and clad in a garment of yellow satin, and they had gold clasps upon their insteps. In the hand of each of them was an ivory bow, strung with the sinews of the stag; and their arrows had shafts of the bone of the whale, and were winged with peacock’s feathers; the shafts also had golden heads. And they had daggers with blades of gold, and with hilts of the bone of the whale. And they were shooting their daggers.

“And a little way from them I saw a man in the prime of life, with his beard newly shorn, clad in a robe and a mantle of yellow satin; and round the top of his mantle was a band of gold lace. On his feet were shoes of variegated leather, fastened by two bosses of gold. When I saw him, I went towards him and saluted him, and such was his courtesy that he no sooner received my greeting than he returned it. And he went with me towards the Castle.

Now there were no dwellers in the Castle except those who were in one hall. And there I saw four-and-twenty damsels, embroidering satin at a window. And this I tell thee, Kai, that the least fair of them was fairer than the fairest maid thou hast ever beheld in the Island of Britain, and the least lovely of them was more lovely than Gwenhwyvar, the wife of Arthur, when she has appeared loveliest at the Offering, on the day of the Nativity, or at the feast of Easter”.

The Mabinogion

Aug 092010
 

When they reached the house of t he west wind, the east wind said that the girl he had brought with him was destined for the prince who lived in the castle east of the sun and west of the moon. She had set out to find him, and he had brought her this far and would be glad to know if the west wind knew how to get to the castle.

“No”, said the west wind. “I’ve never blown that far. But if you want, I’ll go with you to our brother the south wind, for he’s much more powerful than either of us, and he has blown far and wide. Maybe he’ll be able to tell you. Climb on my back, and I’ll take you to him.” Yes, she climbed on his back, and they traveled to the south wind, and I think it didn’t take them very long at all.

When they got there, the west wind asked if the south wind knew the way to the castle that lay east of the sun and west of the moon, for the girl with him was destined for the prince who lived there. “Is that so?” said the south wind. “Is she the one? Well, I have visited plenty of places in my time, but I have never yet blown over there.

“If you want, I’ll take you to my brother the north wind; he is the oldest and most powerful of us all. If he doesn’t know where it is, you’ll never find anyone in the world who will know. Climb on my back, and I’ll take you there.” Yes, she climbed on his back, and off he went at a good clip.

They did not have to travel far. When they reached the house of the north wind, he was so fierce and cantankerous that he blew cold gusts at them from a long way off. “Blast you both, what do you want?” he roared from afar, and they both felt an icy shiver. ” Well,” said the south wind, “you don’t need to bluster so loudly, for I am  your brother, the south wind, and here is the girl who is destined for the prince who lives in the castle that lies east of the sun and west of the moon. She wants to know whether you were ever there and whether you can show her the way, for she so much wants to find the prince again.”

“Yes, I know where he is,” the  north wind said, “Once I blew an aspen leaf over there, but afterward I was so tired that I couldn’t blow  single gust for many days. If you really want to go there and aren’t afraid to come along with me, I’ll take you on my back and see if I can blow you over there.” Yes, with all her heart, she wanted to go and had to get there if it was at all possible. And she would not be afraid, no matter how wild the ride.”

East of the Sun, West of the Moon, Asbornsen and Moe