Issue #16, Wolf-Moon

Welcome to the Wolf-Moon issue! This will be the final issue under present editorship; Issue 17 onwards will be edited by Mathew Hern.

For this issue, I present my own Rune-Poem, from 2001 c.e.

 

Rune – Poem

FEE to be free must freely be given;

gold hoarded makes human cattle;

the serpent’s shining scales crawl with fatal envy.

 

AUROCH’s strength is limitless, surging from the shadowed earth;

an ancient bull bellows on the frozen moor –

but fine rain melts hard ice

 

THURS thrusting from the mindless rocks;

three thorns thrown for torment;

but this force is terrible for man or woman to grasp.

 

ANSUZ is the tearing wind of Odhr’s breath;

the mighty Word leads the wise,

but is a terrible sword to the common man

 

RIDING on the right road is a swift journey,

and in the hall a ready rede,

but rowning the rites is rough on the horse

 

KEN’s cunning fire makes clear light;

yet children cannot play

with the scourge of art

 

GIFT is honour to the host and good for the guest,

and a kiss that begets greatness;

though the wise should grasp the cost of the gain.

 

WYN is wonder when the wind waves the banner,

and happiness of the war-band;

but if a man lose his way in joyous company,

then woeful is his lot

 

 

 

HAIL is hurled from the heavens,

wreaking harm to crops, and havoc to the beast;

yet it is the seed of perfection,

sown for the world’s remaking.

 

NEED is a narrow way through hardship,

and terrible toil;

yet it is a goad to greatness,

and the midwife of magic.

 

ICE is cold beauty, the bridge over endless chaos;

slippery and untrustworthy, it is death to the fey;

but the wise may use and enjoy, while trusting not.

 

YEAR brings to term whatever we sow;

the good earth guarantees growth –

but the gain is in grief

when the germ is rotten

 

YEW stands alone, strongest in the stead;

yet its branches bear berries of death;

and none but a Lord may string the bow of fire.

 

PERTHRO is played with passion and joy,

testing and igniting the luck of bold Lords;

yet things unknown to men are born in the web of Wyrd.

 

ELKSEDGE shoots up from the mud

sharp and dangerous to the young seeker who tries to grasp it,

setting out on the bloody road to wisdom.

 

SUN’s glory guides the seaman on his voyage;

if he has no love for clouds and ice,

victorious he returns 

 

 

TYR the noble leader faces the great wolf;

a lone star shows him his truth;

often must he turn to guide his clan,

showing not his one hand.

 

BIRCH is first to brighten the young wood,

her lovely limbs beauty and birth and nurture;

but the unwary spirit may be lulled to sleep in her shade.

 

HORSE is true friend, and good speed among the nine worlds,

and joyous companionship;

but if carelessness brings nightmare, then closeness is deadly

 

MAN is joy unto man, glad mortal company in the ship of forever;

but law and compromise must he make

when love fails

 

LAKE is life’s water, and endless depth unto death,

and the place of fearful sacrifice;

but the leek thrusts up green and healing

 

ING is the God of the old forest earth,

reaching East,

reversing the spin of the polar swastika,

bringing serpent gold from the ancient past.

 

DAY is the famous light,

mirth and hope to all,

and the unseen cleft in the world’s dawn

 

HOME is the enclosure, warded with inborn might, and holy,

where live the athelings in freedom and pleasure,

if there be right;

but many a stronghold is poor in spirit,

and a place of woe to its folks.

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