History of the Ælfar – Part I (Prose)

Note: This is an excerpt from a larger project that I have been working on for many years concerning the mythical and legendary history of Britain.

Excerpt from

Antiqua
Historia Britanniae

(The Ancient History of Britannia)

by Emrys of Carmarthen (c 390 CE)

Edited by John W. Leys

They came from beyond the horizon, perhaps traveling on sunbeams across the heavens, and settled beyond the north wind. The Eldar, the elder races, who inhabited these lands long before the advent of mankind. Tall and slight of build their delicate features radiate an unexpected sense of power, intelligence, and beauty. Though they are said to have a lifespan several times that of a man, their lives are said to be significantly shorter than their forbearers, who were said to be practically immortal, barring accidents. Whether this is due to, as some claim, interbreeding with mankind, or merely a sign
of entropy’s ever-increasing hold on our world is ultimately unknown. Called the Ælfar, a name thought to be related to the Latin word album (white) due to their pale complexion and the glow they radiate, their ultimate origin is a mystery, even, it would seem, to themselves.

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The Birth of Miðgarðr

An Excerpt from the Recitation of Visions of Ðanuz, High Priestess of Jorð

Listen and attend,
Sons and daughters of
Ash and Elm,
Grandchildren of Yggdrasil,
To the visions and memories
I share and recite.
Older than all your
Gods and kings am I,
More ancient than all your cities
And all your petty borders!

I remember when
Fair Alfheim still stood
Above the waves
Of the Fomoires abode,
Before Falias’ foundation,
Or a single tunnel
Dug out by Dvergar hands
Into the depths below
Niðavellir’s dark fields.

I recall when Alßiz’s kin
First arrives in moonlight
Along the banks of the Rhun,
Long before the sons of Alßiz
Founded the cities of the north,
Before Æliz took up his holy
—If not misguided—
Mission in the east,
Before brother ßanðr fell to darkness
And Chaos.

Generations before the tyrrany
Of Aurgelmir, son of Tiwaz,
Gluttenous Ymir, great-grandson of
Etunaz the bold,
Who brought with him
The Long Winter of Blainn
From which only Woðanaz
And the sons of Borr could thaw
And retore order to the world.

I was there and saw
The Alföðr and his brothers
Raise the walls made
Of Jotnar bones,
To protect the saplings of
Ash and Elm
From the chaos and wrath
Of the surviving insatiable offspring
of Ymir’s loins,
In the garden at the heart
Of the world.

4/16/18

Notes on Pronunciation:
ß = “v”
Đ / ð = “th” as in father
ȝ = “y” as in youth.
Æ = “aye”

Miðgarðr = Mith-garth (“th” as in father)
Ðanuz = Than-ooze (“th” as in father)
Jorð = yorth (“th” as in father)
Yggdrasil = Eeg-drass-ill
Alfheim = Alf-Haym
Dvergar = D-verg-ar
Niðavellir= Nith-a-vel-ear (“th” as in father)
Alßiz = Al-viz
Rhun = Roon
Æliz = Aye-liz
ßanðr = Van-thur (“th” as in father)
Aurgelmir = Our-gel-meer (“g” as in gold)
Tiwaz = Two-az
Ymir = Eye-Meer
Woðanaz = Woah-than-ahz (“th” as in father)
Alföðr = all-fa-ther (“th” as in father)
Jotnar = Yote-nar

My 16th poem for National Poetry Writing Month.

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Dreams of Ancient Ælfheimr Before the Flood

Glorious kingdom of the sons of Alßiz,
Stretching from the gleaming towers
Of Taran in Falias,
Near the grove where the wise Oak-Knowers
Taught and discussed the secrets of existence,
To the shadowed streets of Twerias
In the mines of Niðavellir,
Where the Iron-Knowers, sons of Đwerȝaz,
Molded metals into treasures
Fit for gods.

So much lost,
Washed away in the waves,
Hidden under Austri’s sea,
Drowned Dvergar mines,
Flood waters cutting off
The sacred cities of the north
From the lands of man,
Leaving only
The abundant Isle of Ériu
And Ælfeon,
Also known as Ynys Ælfar,
Last isle of the Elves,
Called Myriddunin,
The Sea Fortess
That would be the home and sanctuary
Of the children of Pritan.

3-10-4/1/18

My first poem for National Poetry Writing Month.

Pronunciation Key:
ß = “v”
Đ / ð = “th” as in father
ȝ = “y” as in youth.
Æ = “aye”
dd = “th” as in father

Đwerȝaz

Two_Völuspá_Dwarves_by_Frølich

Đwerȝaz,
Đwerȝar Föðr, Twergar Fater, Dvergar Föðr,
Craftsman, smith; miner,
Born of Alβiz Alfar Föðr,
Apprentice to his great smith uncle,
βanðr Døkkálfar,
Called Svartálf, Black Elf,
Preferring the blackness of the mines
To the brightness of the day.

Dug out the labrynth underground
Mine city of Twerias,
Under the misty plains of Niðavellir,
Within sight of the spot
Where moonbeams shone
On the surface of the Rhun,
Where Móðsognir dug
And Durinn forged treasures
For elves, men, and gods:
Swords and spears,
Cups and cauldrens,
War hammers and wigs.

Four treasures for Alfheim,
Destined for Éire.
Thirteen treasures for Albion,
Isle of Alfar.
Six treasures for Asgard,
Forged in mischief,
Powerless to save them from thier doom.

1/16/18

Pronunciation Guide:
Đwerȝaz = Thwer-yaz (“th” as in father)
Đwerȝaz = Thwer-yar (“th” as in father)
Föðr = Fa-ther
Twergar = Twer-gar
Fater = Fah-ter
Dvergar = D-verg-ar (Old Norse, Dwarves, Plural of Dvergr)
Alβiz = Al-viz
Alfar = Al-far (old Norse, Elf)
βanðr =Van-thur (“th” as in father)
Døkkálfar = Dock-Al-Far
Twerias = Twer-ee-ahs
Niðavellir = Nith-a-vel-ear (“th” as in father)
Móðsognir = Moeth-sog-near (“th” as in father)
Alfheim = Alf-haym
Éire = Air-eh

Image:An illustration of two dwarves for Völuspá by Lorenz Frølich. Published in 1895 in Karl Gjellerup’s Den ældre Eddas Gudesange. Found on Wikimedia Commons.

The Wick’d Day of Destiny

Do you recall that wick’d day of destiny
At Camlann when Arthur fell
Near the corpse of murderous Mordred,
Nephew, some say the rightful heir
By the reckoning of the old ways,
Through his mothers blood,
As still practiced by our Pictish cousins to the north,
His noble blood still staining Caliburn’s blade?

The great king outlasting his sister’s son
By mere hours.
Enough to ensure his enchanted elvish blade
Was returned from whence it came,
Flung into calm waters,
Or—perhapse–taken over water
To that other worldly island
where it was forged by fay hands.

The king is dead,
The kingdom lost, fractured beyond repair.
Though the crown passes to another
None could now hold back the tide
That Vortigern let loose:
The barbarian men
Pushing us west and north,
And naming the land for themselves.

Yet hope still persists
In the tales we tell,
That the king merely sleeps,
Recovering from deadly wounds,
Nursed by fay magics.
To return one day,
Grasp his mighty sword,
And set us free.

12-11-17

Of Alfar and Dvergar

Alβiz Alfar Föðr,
Born of moonbeams
Dancing on the fog of the forrest
Near the river of Rhun,
Patriarch to seven brothers and sisters
Awoken on the riverbank.

Married Nerþuz, earth mother,
Daughter of sunlight
Refracted off the dew drops
Dripping from a rose petal.

Five sons and four cities founded
In the north west of the world,
Where the Alfar found a home:
Falȝaz the wise, student of Nature,
Keeper of her secrets.
Warrior twins, Gorȝaz and Finđȝaz,
Defenders of their tribe.
Murȝaz the cultivator
Of fruits, vegitables, and lamb.
Đwerȝaz the fabricator,
Crafting tools, weapons and treasures
For his parents, brothers, and people.

Đwerȝaz Dvergar Föðr,
Molding metals as if so much clay.
Móðsognir Đwerȝaz-son
Digging at the misty dark
Mines of Niðavellir,
Searching the earths for metals and gems
For his father and brother, Durinn,
To mold into swords, stones, spears and cauldrons,
Treasures kept in city vaults
Until their time of need.

12-5-17

Pronunciation Guide:
Alfar = Al-far (old Norse, Elf)
Dvergar = D-verg-ar (Old Norse, Dwarves, Plural of Dvergr)
Alβiz = Al-viz
Föðr = Fa-ther
Rhun = Rune
Nerþuz = Ner-thooz (“th” as in Thor)
Falȝaz = Fal-yaz
Gorȝaz = Gore-yaz
Finđȝaz = Finth-yaz (“th” as in father)
Murȝaz = Mer-yaz
Đwerȝaz = Thwer-yaz (“th” as in father)
Móðsognir = Moeth-sog-near (“th” as in father)
Niðavellir = Nith-a-vel-ear (“th” as in father)

Children of Danu

Danu, our mother,
Goddess of the Danube,
Sister of the Rhine,
Liquid lifeblood
Of Germani and Kelts.

Mother of Irish gods,
Who arrive in Éire
Riding clouds of mist and fire.
Ruling the Emerald Isle
Til the coming of the sons of Míl
Drove them to retreat underground,
Into the ancient sídhe,
Shadows in the Otherworld.

9/8/17

Pronunciation key:
Danu – Dan-oo
Germani – Jer-MAN-ee
Éire – Air-ya
sidhe – shee.

Note: I am not very knowledgeable when it comes to Irish Gaelic pronunciations, so some of these may not be exact. Corrections are welcome!

Twilight Visions

A one-armed Odin-eyed
Mad martyr prophet
Stands at the edge of the abyss,
Visions of the White Wyrm
Strangling creation; swallowing time.

Twilight stars fall,
Diamonds plunged in velvet night,
Grandsons kill grandfathers
Before fathers are conceived,
Chaos and Paradox burn
The charred corpse of causality.
Yesterday, today; tomorrow
Collapse on themselves
Folding into singularity:
The final moment.

Wolves loose their chains,
Feasting on Sun, Moon and Sky.
Darkness & silence fall.
The Question left unanswered.

7/6-7/9/17

This poem was originally published on The Ink Owl on 8/28/17 as part of his writing prompt challenge using the phrase ‘Into the Deep I Plunge’ to create a fantasy based piece.

Staring into the Flames

Dedicated to the brave men and women fighting all the wild fires in Oregon
(And everywhere!)

Eagle_Crest_Tree_Top_Fire_-_2_1504652892831_10649618_ver1.0

Raging fires of Muspelheim
Flaming sword of Surtr,
Gentle beautiful glow
Of destruction peers over the ridge.

A brigade of brave warriors,
Oath sworn to Móðir Jorð,
Stand ready in defense
Of her ancient holy lodge,
Prepared to give no quarter
And surrender no ground,
Facing down the Eldjötnar
And sons of Muspel,
Tearing through the forests of Freyja,
Burning Miðgarð black.

Oðinn’s army,
Children of Ash and Elm,
Siblings of Oak and Fir,
Stand at the edge of Ragnarok
Without fear.

9/5/17

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Pronunciations:
Muspelheim = Moo-spell-haym
Móðir Jorð = Moe-thear Yorth (Th as in father) – “Mother Jorð (Earth)”
Eldjötnar = Eld-Yote-nar
Freyja = Frey-ya
Miðgarð = Mith-garth (Th as in Father)
Oðinn = Oh-thin (TH as in Father)
Ragnarök = Rag-na-rock

Pictures are of the Elk Creek Fire currently burning (September ’17) along the Columbia River in Oregon.

If Looks Could Kill (a Tanka)

medusa

Murky dark hallways
Stone statues silently scream
Frozen in granite
Forever held in terror
The Gorgon smiles; turns away

8/30/17

This is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge No. 48 #Haiku #Tanka #Haibun: STONE & TURN

Image is Medusa by Arnold Böcklin (16 October 1827 – 16 January 1901). Found on Wikimedia Commons.