Lokadottir

Lokadottir ©2014 Eliza Murdock

Lokadottir ©2014 Eliza Murdock

Now Hel’s abode was beneath the second root of Yggdrasil,
There cast down by Odin, where a portion of the dead are taken.
In winter’s maw she dwelt, within the hall of Éljúðnir.
Her countenance eclipsed, her weeping rose
Even to the ears of her father
Who desired to know the source of such grief.

Then spoke Loki, “What has turned your eyes to seas,
Oh daughter?  What your brow to blackness?”
Hel replied, “For the face of he, oh father,
Who is counted fairest, whom I am denied.
For the company of my heart’s desire,
Barren in my breast as my bed.”

Then spoke Loki, “Be still, oh daughter, and quell your rivers.
Call your servants to array you in dresses and jewels
Your heart’s desire shall be fulfilled, but in time.”
Then upon her father’s cheek Hel gave her offerings of obedience
And her servants bore away her tears in vials of glass,
To make of them jewels upon wires of sunlight and threads of moonlight.

But Loki returned to Ásgarðr, purposed already in his mind
For what father could be blinded to such sorrows?”
Then taking upon him the appearance of an old woman
And in disguise, he persuaded Frigga to tell him Baldr’s weakness;
For the mistletoe alone had she not secured the promise
Of bringing no harm upon her son.

In this was found the chance Loki needed,
And from the plant he crafted a spear.
Giving it to Baldr’s brother to throw
So that it pierced him and instantly he fell dead,
Thus would the fairest of the gods be sent
To the Grave-warden’s halls upon flaming ship.

As Odin banished Hel, so Loki sent Baldr, also,
And to her bosom he was received, fairest of the gods.
When the Æsir came with supplications for his return
She replied that unless the whole of creation grieved –
Even as she had grieved for his absence –
Then he would not be released from the grave.

All creation grieved, save for one alone;
Who, being Loki in disguise, ensured his daughter’s joy.
What father is there who would do more?
As Odin banished Hel, so Loki sent Baldr, also,
To bind them until Ragnarok.
For as Odin does, so too shall Loki Laufeyson.

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Æthernet

First of all things was the expanse into which all other things burst forth in a great cataclysm of fire and light.  Yet while the æther is of all things the greatest, the mystery of it is also greatest.  For as in darkness is hidden secrets that light may reveal, this darkness resists the light of understanding, as a veil over our eyes which obscures.

The æther birthed the Creators, who gathered to themselves the Firstlight and formed them into the forges of the Gods.  In them they made yet greater and greater creations, binding together the lesser with the force of their hammer blows.  They toiled until they could create no more, and their forges burned until they had exhausted their fuel.

Some, weary of their work, left their forges to cool and die.  But some burned too hot, and in their folly they did not see the doom they heaped upon their own heads.  They pushed too far and their forges, in a violent burst, expelled all of the creations, scattering them across the æther.  These greater creations from deep within the forges, cold without the Creator’s fire, gathered around other forges, some closer and some further away.

Among the Creators were some who were not content with the way of the others.  Instead, burning first their own fuel, they hungered for more.  Such hunger was in them that they sought to consume all others.  They are the Nassanai, their forms like spiders with grasping legs.

These Creators have turned to Destroyers, the Devourers of all that fall into their spiral webs.  They have spread their nets across the æther, catching all that wander too close, and from their dens they draw in their nets toward their waiting mouths, consuming all things: Creators, creations, forges, those which gather for warmth, and even the Firstlight.

So hungry are the Nassanai for more and more to fill their bowels that they may even catch one another, their webs colliding, distorted, and engage in a great battle.  In the end, a victor will remain, even more powerful and even more hungry.  The Nassanai will consume, destroy, and battle until time has ended and only one remains, and the Firstlight shall in the end be extinguished, and thus will come the end of all things, and only the æther will remain.

 

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Two by Two

T S, “Hakuna Matata, 1″ (via 1stDibs)

Two by Two

When Noah brought into the ark
Animals of every kind, packed full
Leaving to the coming floods
The all-but-two, the majority cull.

Rising waters made the sheep
Look like fluffy clouds upon the sea;
Elephant trunks turned into snorkels
As fish explored new reefs of ivory.

And for a while the arrogant birds
Thought themselves above the tides
Until, one by one, their wings gave way,
Exhausted stars falling from the skies.

Still it rose and swelled until
The last giraffe became aware
Her neck was not quite long enough
To take another breath of air.

2013 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 11

For today’s prompt, we’re going to write ekphrastic poetry–or poetry based off another piece of art. In the past, I’ve provided paintings, but today, I’m picking photographs (for something a little different). You may use one of the images below or choose your own

Or in this case, the photo above.  Now I’ll admit, when I saw the *thumbnail* of the above, I thought it was a surreal picture of giraffe up to their necks in water.  It wasn’t until I saw the large version that I realized they were clouds.  Still, I liked the image it brought to mind, so I stuck with it.  Eye of the beholder and all that. 🙂

Do check out some of the other pictures in the link above, they’re really quite pretty.