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per amica silentia lunae

or, across the ferny brae with the evil voodoo celt

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Poem: The Dvergar
So, some background first: one of the spirits that kenazf works with is Andvari. Andvari apparently likes my poetry and commissioned me to write one about the dvergar. The result is below (in final form... for now). Many thanks to lalandergirl for pointing me at Grimm, and to everyone else who
provided suggestions, encouragement, or just a listening ear...

The Dvergar

Taste of smoke- of peat, of forge’s fires
Slides blessing along my tongue,
Wends its way into my mind.
Let it blaze fierce to fire my head,
Give my thoughts the galloping force
Of this sun-goaded Moon of Horses.

Hear me sing of the hidden ones,
Half-forgotten in this frantic age-
Not the seven twee forest miners known to most,
Nor the stalwart underworld warriors
Made famed by a greater maker than I
(Though he, learnéd in lore,
Knew more of the truth than most).
No, these folk are more shadowed,
Dark amongst the pale ghosts, clad
In grey, brown, black. Sooty, cunning smiths,
I must be methodical to honor their craft,
And open my heart to honor our kinship-
Cousins, god-created like us,
Yet cloaked in shadow- or a different light,
A different time pervading their caves
And mountain forges, granting them
The gem-precious gift of divination.
Thrawn and twisted from their labors,
Small to some eyes, but still it’s said
That four of them form the pillars
Upholding the sky of stars.

Deep they are, and far away,
Hard to find and yet not gone-
They linger still by waterfalls, in wild places;
And stone-born echoes bring their voices,
Death-names ringing like hammers.
They know us well, and watch us avidly-
Chafing at our faithless ways,
Though needing us. For riddle-wise
Knowers of the virtues of plants and stones
May still need students, hungry to learn
(And quick to pay). Or sharp sellers,
Hard bargainers, could want our custom,
Wish to see love of craft and wisdom
Alloyed in with greed for gold- perhaps
Reflecting a glint of their secret hearts.

Deep within, we have a need for them, as well,
Though peril lies along that path-
For they are tempters, lurers, wily captors,
And their every lesson is weighed and balanced
With precision against the price.
Even their startling, flame-bright gifts
Are chased and carved and knotted-in with purpose.
Yet so much of might have they made for this world:
Spear and ship, ring and hammer,
Wolf-fetter, goddess-hair, golden boar.
What wonders might arise if we seek
To clasp in cautious fellowship the hard hands
Of the sons of Dvalin and Ivaldi?
This too- it could be, rich and wise and mighty,
They are yet, still and always lonely,
As are we. This alone may draw us close.

Taste of honey now wells in my mouth,
And so thankful, but wary of whence,
Of how the mead of poetry came to be;
Mindful that the vessel of reconciliation
Holds blood, that the stirrer of inspiration
Stirs fury also; I end my song.