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~ By Courtesy of Others ~



I am the mercenary detested by his foes.
I am the weapons-wielder who causes all their woes.
They are no more than the grass beneath my great steed's hooves.
They are feed for the axe that hacks at whatever moves.

I always stand by the side of my Northern brethren
Who came from as far as me to fight for our sovereign.
Together, we stand as the guard of Miklagard's lord,
United by the shield, the spear, the axe and the sword.

Many families I've broken with a swing of my blade,
Yet a family to call my own I have never made.
I have never sought the quiet life of the homestead,
Nor have I yearned for a wife beside me in my bed.

Alas, it is far too late for me to change my ways.
I have come close to my end in battle countless days.
When the Spear-Lord sends his luminous daughters for me,
My brothers may weep, but I shall leave with jubilee.

Justin Douglas Blackford


Image: Kontantin Vasiljev, Russian painter (1942-1976)

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