2016 05 22
Floating away from the long pine-wood hall,
where her father hosts their tribe at a feast,
Gyda gazes at swirl of sparkling waves
that splatter steep slopes of pine-shrouded mountains.
Watching long wood ships with high curving prows
rock back and forth on silver-pebble beach,
Gyda sighs and clutches her long gold hair,
as gray mist shrouds narrow fjord with despair.
I am nothing but sunlight leaping bright
on endless swirls of dark swallowing waves,
nothing but wind billowing among pines
that whistle in deep hollow of my head.
My grandmother Alfhild clutched both my arms
and whispered how she saw with her own eyes
shadow become dragon with hundred eyes
that soared on wings of fire from mountain cave.
My father and everyone in my clan
look through my face as if I am not real
and no one ever calls me by my name,
though I feel mute wind gusting at my face.
I am not real unless I speak words loud
and then I feel my chest vibrate with breath,
which causes my heart to beat like sea waves,
so I must sail away to Fairyland.
Stepping in small boat with bag of fresh bread,
Gyda sails past towering mountain peaks
and follows the bright sun wheel rolling west
across the bottomless abyss of hope.
Billions of stars gleam in river of milk
that streams across infinite sky of time
and spirals down into her gazing eyes
to glow as eyes of everyone she loves.
Floating forward at dawn on silver sea,
Gyda aims toward faint gleam of ringing bells,
and wonders if she floats forever lost
like the planet of Idhun among stars.
From swirling mist I saw emerge fair isle
of lush green hills where flocks of white lambs grazed,
and sailed winding river past vast estates
where fairies in white gowns chanted sweet hymns.
Arriving at huge city of great halls,
I stepped ashore this magic Fairyland
and walked into the vast hall of White Tower
where the Fairy Queen sat on a gold throne.
Wearing a gold crown with a moon-sized diamond,
Victoria gestured with a thin gold scepter
so the Wizard Alfred Tennyson stood
before the crowd and read long epic poem.
Young man wearing a suit, tie, and top hat
took my hands and twirled me around in dance,
then took me to tower where Gwinevere sang,
and kissed me till the stars became his eyes.
That is how I came here to Fairyland,
or England, as this misty isle is named,
from Gotland, in the misty fjords of Sweden,
many years ago and found a new life.
Gazing for a long while at seven children
and twenty-four grandchildren of her heart,
Gyda wipes a tear from her silver eyes,
and they all crowd around to kiss her cheeks.
Now that the Germans stopped bombing our town,
we can return upstairs from this dank cellar
and share a feast around the glowing hearth
where I will tell you more tales of my life.