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Lady of the Vanir

Tune: "The Dowie Dens of Yarrow", Scottish border ballad, 18th c. or earlier
Sheet Music & YouTube performance

There came a lady fae the west
Who left not one cold man here;
She smelled of trees and ocean breeze,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She kissed the pollen on the rose,
She kissed the golden corn ear,
She kissed the seed within the womb,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She went forth from the towers of light,
She felt no sorrow nor fear;
She went to seek the heart of the night,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She found the cavern dark and deep,
All filled with gold and jewels dear;
She found the small men at their work,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She put her arm about the East,
And found a thought so light and clear;
She breathed forth song and melody,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She put her tongue about the South,
And in her breast a flame did sear;
She shouted forth her battle cry,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She put her leg about the West,
And felt her Mother's breast near;
She gave her heart to all the world,
The Lady of the Vanir.

She put her womb about the North,
And felt the star of night appear;
She bore it forth into the light,
The Lady of the Vanir.

As she went forth, her white neck shone
With the jewels of ice and fire,
And in her path the flowers they grew
For the Lady of the Vanir.

Some make things grow, and others know,
And some are fair and full of cheer,
But there's not a sweeter, wilder love
Than the Lady of the Vanir.

© Alice Karlsdóttir 1981

Originally published in Boreas no. 15 (1981)
Released as a track on "Birdking" by Fire + Ice, 2000

Image: © Claudia Engelen, Portfolio & Prints, used by permission
Illustr. used in the reprint of "Deutsche Mythologie", Dr. F. Kauffmanns, Bohmeier Verlag.

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