gunnora at bga.com
Wed Oct 30 06:54:34 PST 1996
Setting the clocks back is always a reminder for me that the days
are shortening and that Midwinter and Jul will soon be upon us. The Vikings
believed that the short dark days of winter, and particularly Freyr's feast
of Jul (Yule) was the time when one's departed ancestors visited in some
way. There was always an extra place set at the table for the feast in case
an ancestor arrived an made him- or herself known. A while back, I was
moved to write a song in honor of any of my ancestors who might choose to
visit my camp as the dark of the year approaches.
Where are the heroes that courage revealed?
The battle-bright warriors who strode to the field
Of the war, their swords a light in the fray?
Those heroes are gone, they have all passed away.
Where are the earls who led in the van?
The chieftains and kings who held sway in the land
Of our fathers, revered in story and song?
They've all passed away, now our heroes are gone.
Where are the unsung who silently strove?
The women and children and all the unknown
Who were models upon which to pattern our deeds?
Those heroes are gone, from this life they are freed.
And now in this time of the dark of the sun,
Remember what's ended is only begun.
As Sunna sets each evening, she rises at morn:
To the halls of the Gods are our heroes reborn!
And we, who with valor must conquer each day,
We too are each heroes, as gallant as they.
With truth as our banner and courage our light
We will come to those halls when we tread the long night.
So lift up a toast with the ale-filled horn
To those who have faced well their wyrds and are gone.
Live out your life and tradition all keep;
Drink to God and to Hero this Midwinter's Eve!
--- Gunnora Hallakarva.
The tune for this song is simple. The symbols used in my song notation are:
D Above High C = D2
High C = C2
D above Middle C = D1
Middle C = C1
Th tune for "Midwinter's Toast, assuming one note for each syllable in the
first verse, is:
E E F G F E G F E B
D2 D2 D2 D2 D2 C2 B C2 B A B
G G B B B A G A A A A G
F G G G G F E F E D E
Ek eigi visa (th)ik hversu o(dh)lask Lofstirrlauf-Kruna
heldr hversu na Hersis-A(dh)al
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