All we are is walking meat
Husks of men that were one day
Here and there and chaos sown
They’ve walked the walls and now they’re grown
Meat to feed the mighty vats
Of flesh and man and wilder cat
We men of dust and beastly fray
That Gods would scorn
and earth, decay
That malice and her ilk would maim
That ancient of the earth would cave
Upon our heads a mighty gash
From wounded heart and sightless blame
Pathetic do we weave this woe
this banner war of spectral herds
Warriors upon the night
The kind that never death and blight
A windy chill is all we feel
When men of death and dark break door
Then carry us to endless night
And onward hunt for evermore
I leave you now for all that’s real
All that was and will reveal
The doors have opened on this night
The will to live has taken flight
Hamna, Tromso, Norway
There are woods not far from here. A forest dark and dense with the magicka of old. Over snow and black rock, one could find this place quickly and with ease. What would drive one to this wood, to this place long forgotten by menfolk? The trees stand there in the snow, gawking at our very existence. They look upon us as if we are of their world, but cast out to live on the fringes of our broken lands. There are trees that move, with deep and weary strides over the ground. They linger there in the fields where white light dances off the snowdrifts and icy lakes. In these perfect moments, I am left wondering what draws me to this place. To this woodland realm of battle cries and ancient words.
I have travelled this path many a time in my youth, this concealed walkway to the fabled Wood of Trolls. It is a place unlike anything I have ever seen before. There is snow, moss covered figures of stone and of course, there are the trees. They are giants of wood taller than your heroes, or the towers that house your greatest fears. Rare and magickal sensations break into my senses as I drift over the few hundred steps I need to take to reach the forest edge. I know this path. It seems that at some other time in my life I have visited this place, and yet my steps are unfamiliar and clumsy. Lost in thought, I stumble on the tree that has haunted my mind for centuries, much longer than I have actually lived on this plane. It towers over all else that would call this forest home. A mighty Pine tree stretches out before me and into the evening sky. My words, my mind, heart and soul are nothing before the beauty of this ancient god. It takes me away from myself and removes me from the realm I call home. My reality is stripped from me as I am lifted high into the worlds above. I find clarity in my ascent.
This is the forest that I was birthed into. With a veil of mist and moonlight as guidance, I realise that these are the first trees that I looked upon when my journey began. There was no snow all those years ago, no tranquil light to bless or bathe me. This place has changed much since I first laid my eyes on it all those years ago. It is a gift to wander this forest, now, after all the fear and recollection. I know now why it is that I find this place both familiar and alien. This forest, this unending woodland realm with all its trees and the earth they live upon. I am its Guardian, a shaper of earth and water, bound by this life and its magick to guard this place eternally. From the mightiest beast and the worms of quartz and metal that cleanse the earth, to the smallest rock and every Pine needle surrounding them. I am sworn to shield this realm from any and all that would bring it harm.
I live here, in this world, and in this memory of a forest walk….
Kings in castles rule with blood, stolen from the men and mares. The blood of workers, weavers, woodsman, fed into the vats that bruised them. Blood takes on the form of all, life and love and country call. Even words that scar the mind, scar the body, all in kind. Kings in castles rule with words, stolen from the dragons horde. The words of children, changing, chosen, written in the books that bore them.