Tolling to wake over the fog-fret sea;
Over the fathomless portent of braying waves,
Which, lash upon lash, blast upon remnant spires,
The crumbling sentinel ‘liths yet unbowed,
Who, to the western shore through the bursting brume
Of whitened brine yet glare; knelling dispersion
Of the night-tide rite’s chorus of redes profane
From the hidden hills in the womb of night, where life
Upon the pale-lit alter rounds; a lustering,
As though in dreadful exaltation
Tremulous fists strike forth tablets of stone
Into the paling sky; in saffron robes
Out of the hills of Oregon, there heaves
The sun in slow ascent.

Sayings of Othin

I do not see that you are filled
With fire and burning coal


He hath need of fire who now is come,
Fettered with cold to his heart—
To dispel the rimy fell,
And free him from the waning sun.

He hath need of wits who wanders wide,
Strayed from the ease of his home—
To disperse the clamored knell,
And free him from beguiling words.


The bridge has fallen—I saw them wading
Through rivers wild—like a songless moon
They poured upon the hearts of man.
Would you yet know more?

At the oak I lied as dead—lost to life and name.
Generations came to pass—yet I could not speak.
I heard the speech of men and I was silent.
Would you yet know more?


A hall I saw where shadows dance,
Where flames unknown writhed in chant;
Where cast upon the wall they coursed,
Generations in the night.

All deeds, all thoughts, all passions,
Disposed of mortal frame—
To attest myself to myself,
Birthed of this sacred flame.

And the flames, they drew me near,
To chant inside of me,
The destiny of ages—all becoming clear;
Charring me away—making me disappear;
From across the aeons—for all that I could be—
My father’s eidolon.


There feed they full—on flesh of the lost,
And the home of gods—they redden with gore;
Pale grows the sun—and when the spring breaks soon
Come mighty storm—would you yet know more?

Then wake heroes in my hall;
And upon the earth will bar
The frozen gates of Hel.

Western Mockingbird

The poet upon discovering his voice

I’ve learned to attend your reclusive chant,
Welling through, nest-bound in the hawthorn bloom;
I, patient in the swaying field, have marked
Amid your scolds and chaks, a vibrant trill.

Relieve yourself of nesting awhile—
I’ll not approach your brood; only now perch
The flourishing white hawthorn, framing-field,
And chant your varied chant—you need not swoop.