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~ By Courtesy of Others ~


The Song of Thorstein the Galleon
(Referring to the "Grettis Saga") 

O sing the wyrd
that wove me here
bound and bondless
behind Katalak's stone!
My brother's banesman
lies more alone,
colder than I.
His blood--the murderer
foulest and fell--flows
from the teeth of
my dead brother's blade,
marks my hands;
pays my passage
to this barrow-fate
I earned smiling.

O How could my heart
in its own bone-gaol
wile weary, woeful,
while Thorbjorn Ongul
cools, cleft from
helm-seat to tongue-root
by my fell arm
and Grettir's own blade
while Varangians
witnessed, watchful?

A withered witchwife's
sorest sorcery
it took to best Grettir,
Asmund's strongest son
enduring outlawry endless
amongst the ghosts,
badly banished from
kin and kindness.

But Thorbjorn boasted
false; lesing laid
the battered blade
across my palms.
Grinning, I gave it
gladly back,
through his
bragging jaw-hinge!

O sing--I will ring
these stones with songs
for my life has been good
and all men die
and in Miklagard is
Grettir Asmundarson
avenged at last!

2005 Karen L.U. Kahan aka Savage Daughter
   SavageDaughter on Patreon

Image: Wiktor Wasnezov, 1848-1926

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