Wyrdwend

The Filidhic Literary Blog of Jack Günter

HAMMER AND KNIFE

HAMMER AND KNIFE

Hammer and knife
Speartip and strife!
Terror and dread
The Doomed and the Dead!
Helmet and shield
Warmount and weal
To rise and to stand
The measure of man
A line does unfold, and
Another is drawn
The fields are aflame
The brave still unnamed
Blood black and soiled
Desperate we toil
Lords vomit red
Their flesh cold and bled,
Hammer and Knife
Beaten and sliced!
Arrow and sword
Pierced and then gored!
The grunts and the shouts
The moans and the doubts
The rallies and wounds
Shall we be entombed?
We few as we stand
Our fallen in bands
The calls and commands
They litter the land, yet
Exhausted and spent
None must relent, for
My Hammer and Knife
The Wards of my Life
Still fill both my hands
Shall do what they can,
For I fight to the end
Or to grave I descend…

So this morning after walking Sam (my Great Dane) I was practicing with my warhammer and knife when suddenly the following song came to me as I worked. (Not all of it, but the first couple of stanzas.)

Then, after finishing my practice I went to the west deck of my house, and sat in the sun, and imagined a battle and wrote the rest of the piece.

I will publish it as a poem that my character Larmaegeon composes and sings (so it really a song, but sung without musical accompaniment) for his companions right before they go into a seemingly hopeless battle. For in the scene involved they are ambushed and suddenly surrounded.

So this song will go into my novel series the Kithariune.

Since I am now learning the guitar (see here: Fade Away) and am planning on turning to the lute next I am now considering taking some of the poetic works that Larmaegeon and others compose in the novels and writing out the music to such works as well and including those in the novel too. Along with all of the other supplementary material.

I am rather pleased with Hammer and Knife, but if you wish to comment upon it (if it please you or displease you) then feel free to do so.

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BOB DYLAN’S TREASURES

A very unusual choice, but well deserved from my point of view. As a musical lyricist and poet Dylan is superb. Almost unmatched. A throwback, and a modern Bard really.

October 13 at 7:56 AM
Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature on Thursday for work that the Swedish Academy described as “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”

He is the first American to win the prize since Toni Morrison in 1993, and a groundbreaking choice by the Nobel committee to select the first literature laureate whose career has primarily been as a musician.

Although long rumored as a contender for the prize, Dylan was far down the list of predicted winners, which included such renown writers as Haruki Murakami and Ngugi Wa Thiong’o.

This is the second year in a row that the academy has turned away from fiction writers for the literature prize. And it’s possibly the first year that the prize has gone to someone who is primarily a musician, not a writer.

‘Greatest living poet’ Bob Dylan wins Nobel literature prize

Play Video0:24
Bob Dylan, regarded as the voice of a generation for his influential songs from the 1960s onwards, won the 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature Oct. 13. (Reuters)

The permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, Sara Danius, made the announcement in Stockholm. In a televised interview afterward, Danius said that Dylan “embodies the tradition. And for 54 years, he’s been at it, reinventing himself, creating a new identity.” She suggested that people unfamiliar with his work start with “Blonde on Blonde,” his album from 1966.

“Bob Dylan writes poetry for the ear,” she said. “But it’s perfectly fine to read his works as poetry.”

She drew parallels between Dylan’s work and poets as far back as Greek antiquity.

“It’s an extraordinary example of his brilliant way of rhyming and his pictorial thinking,” Danius said. “If you look back, far back, you discover Homer and Sappho, and they wrote poetic texts that were meant to be listened to. They were meant to be performed. It’s the same way with Bob Dylan. But we still read Homer and Sappho. He can be read and should be read. He is a great poet in the grand English tradition. I know the music, and I’ve started to appreciate him much more now. Today, I’m a lover of Bob Dylan.

Dylan will receive an 18-karat gold medal and a check for about $$925,000.

Dylan, the son of a Minnesota appliance-store owner, began as a folk singer but soon established himself as one of the voices of political protest and cultural reshaping in the 1960s.

Dylan’s songs — driven by his distinctive nasal-twang vocals — are often seen as dense prose poems packed with flamboyant, surreal images. Rolling Stone magazine once called him “the most influential American musician rock and roll has ever produced.”

He first gained notice with ringing protest songs that served as anthems for the civil rights and anti-Vietnam War movements with such songs as “Masters of War,” “The Times They Are a-Changin’,” and “A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall.”

Then he moved on to feverish rock-and-roll drenched in stream-of-consciousness lyrics that evoked the hallucinatory visions of William Blake, the romanticism of Mary Shelley and John Keats and the postmodern pessimism of Allen Ginsberg and other beat poets.

Dylan recalled listening to country music each evening from distant Midwestern stations and taking up the guitar himself at age 10.

He briefly attended the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, where folk music, rather than rock-and-roll, was the abiding musical idiom.

“Picasso had fractured the art world and cracked it wide open,” Dylan once wrote. “He was revolutionary. I wanted to be like that.”

Dylan sang at the 1963 March on Washington, the massive civil rights procession presided over by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Later, at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival, he stunned many fans — and began a new musical direction — by putting aside his acoustic guitar and playing a Fender sunburst Stratocaster electric guitar.

His next albums — “Highway 61 Revisited” and “Blonde on Blonde” — ventured further into the surreal long-form songs and dizzying array of characters that were now his trademark. They are considered by many critics to be his creative peak.

In the late 1970s, he stunned admirers again by declaring himself a Christian and releasing three albums of religiously inspired songs. The singing and musicianship were passionate and professional — Dylan earned his first Grammy Award, for best rock male vocal performance — but the harsh, born-again lyrics puzzled and alienated many of his longtime fans.

In 2005, he released a long-awaited memoir, “Chronicles Vol. 1,” which won him more accolades for its candor and originality. He also appeared in director Martin Scorsese’s “No Direction Home,” a documentary that summed up the triumphs and turmoil of his early years as a performer. In 2008, he was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize for his profound effect on popular music and American culture, “marked by lyrical compositions of extraordinary poetic power.”

I’LL TAKE A JOB

I’ve either been out of town a lot lately or my back has been really screwed up (due to prior and recent injuries), or both. So either I haven’t been able to sit at my desk a lot recently or I couldn’t stand to for very long due to the pain (and I can take a lot of pain). But pain plus crippling has dissuaded me from blogging much, and has been just a bridge too far, you might say.

Nevertheless I have been writing and songwriting and inventing and so forth. A lot actually. But I’ve done all of that by long-hand, by memory (while clearing land, etc.), in bed, or in my notebooks for my daughter to type out later.

I’ve also downloaded and begun testing some new 3-D printer software for my Ikon™ start-up project.

And despite my back I’ve started preparing for Hell Week (which I had to delay due to my injuries) and started refurbishing my garage to convert it into a gym. Which, just to be honest, has probably not sped up my back recuperation rate any. I guess I should also mention that I’ve been trying to get more than three or four hours of sleep a night. You know, to be better set for Hell Week.

Finally I’ve begun finishing and preparing some new short stories and other materials for the Autumn magazine season.

With all of that in mind here is one of the new songs I’ve written lately. I’m still looking for a good composing partner. So if you’re one and are interested, or know of one that might be interested, then contact me here.

I’LL TAKE A JOB

I’ll take a job for nothing, like everybody else
I’ll do it all for nothing, ask me it’s just as well
One day I’ll leave for elsewhere, cause it’s nowhere that I’ve been
Like to say I’d come back, but I’m looking for the end

I’ll take a job to go there, work my way on through
Once I’m there I’ll leave it, like everything else too
One day I’m gonna up and go, cause there’s too much I ain’t seen
But mainly cause you live out there, I saw it in a dream

I’ll take a job
I’ll take a job
One they’ll rob
Of hope and pay
But I don’t care
Because one day
I’ll make enough
To look for you,
And that ain’t
No real job to me

I’ll take a job for what I want
I’ll take a job because I don’t
Much care the cost
Or time I’ve lost
In getting there to you

I’ll take a job with overtime
I’ll take a job, no loss, it’s fine
The money’s poor
But so am I
When I stare up at the sky
To see the stars
Of where you are
When I am here alone

I’ll take a job for nothing, like all the others do
I’ll use my job for something, and that something is for you
One day I’ll leave for where you are, just watch me here I come
Cause where I am ain’t nowhere when I’m somewhere all alone

I’ll take a job to get there, work my way on through
Once I’m there I’ll leave it, then I’ll start again with you
Soon I’m gonna up and go, cause there’s too much I ain’t done
But mainly cause I’m missing you, my job has just begun…

I FORGOT TO REMEMBER – FIRST VERSE

I started these two things, the first the beginning of a poem, the second part of a set of song lyrics, over the weekend. Don’t know what I’m gonna do with either in the end but since it is Monday this is my post for First Verse.

 

I FORGOT TO REMEMBER

I forgot to remember when nothing was right
How all that we tendered was twisted and trite
I begot a dismembered, ephemeral sight
When divided in terror, Theatron of Rites

The devices, the chorus, the Odeion of Scene
A tyrant all bloodied his thralldom most keen
Our vices within us a kingdom of dreams
Grown pregnant and studied, still starving and lean

A Opera of Staging, performed and preformed
Dispelled in the aging distempered and worn
Our union engaging our spectacle torn
Redundant, abundant, of meaning all shorn…

JUST A MAN

Gonna ditch my damned phone, then ditch my car
I’m gonna hitch my wagon to the brightest star
I’m gonna find the person that I’m looking for
Just gonna keep on walking til I reach the shore
Of somewhere I’ve never been before,
To see what lies beyond this land
To see what happens when a man
Is just a man…

If You Leave – I’m going to try again and link to the daily post. I have no idea if it will actually work.

I DONE PAID (IN FULL), AND LOOKING FOR A COMPOSER

I wrote an excellent set of lyrics to a Blues song today I’m calling I Done Paid (In Full).

Started a second Blues song (though I may make it a rock or even a pop song) called Stop Dis Missing Me.

Which I’m pleased with thus far but it is far from finished and I got two or three different ways I can go with it, and just haven’t decided yet.

I also have a backlog of about 150 to 200 songs (the lyrics that is) completed now which I have been unable to compose the music for. Unfortunately I have had no time to compose in the past year. Between my wrist surgery and working on my novel, my book of poetry, my start-up, helping my wife with her new career, and my inventions I have had no time to compose music at all. (I’m a slow composer anyway.) All I’ve had time to do is write the lyrics.

So, if you are a composer looking for a lyricist, or even a band looking for a song-writer then I’d like to talk to you. We can enter into a joint songwriting agreement. 

But I’m only looking for serious and ambitious people who want to produce and sell finished, entirely completed songs. I write in a variety of musical styles and genres, everything from Blues to Rock, from Bluegrass to Opera, Pop, and even Religious music. I have a wide range of musical interests, plus I have some unfinished compositions that I’d be willing for others to take a look at right now and finish if they wish. Splitting the Work and the Profits evenly, of course.

I would prefer working with people in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia, so that we can meet and even work some in each other’s company but I’m not necessarily limiting myself to those in SC, NC, or GA. With the right composer or people, and if we can establish a good and productive working relationship, then I could work with anyone in the United States, or even in other parts of the world.

I’m not gonna set artificial limits on this, the important thing is that we are good at what we do and can produce excellent Work together.

If you are interested then leave a message here or contact me by email.

See ya,

Jack.

P.S.: you can see some prior examples of my song lyrics in this archive category: My Writings and Work

You’ll have to look for them though. All of my work is listed in that archive, not just my songs.

Or you can also just go to this archive: Songs

 

PACKAGES, SAMPLES, AND STOCKWORK – HIGHMOOT

Going to attend an author’s conference and seminar tomorrow.

Already have my packages, seminar samples, and stockwork prepared and in order for presentation…

BRAVE ANNA – FIRST VERSE

These are the lyrics of a song I began this past weekend. It is unfinished but I’m pleased with the start I made…

(painting: please see here – http://www.artbyfuentes.com/commissions/)

BRAVE ANNA

Brave Anna was fair
And thrice did she dare
To be with a man like I
I’d warn her away
Come night and come day,
I never asked her to die

Yet oh she would sing
Of all of the things
Our kisses, our embrace
Beloved
Of the sorrow she’d bring
Unless she could cling
To my heart, enlacing
Her love

Yes, Brave Anna was fair
And dark was her hair
It blew in the sea’s song-breeze
She’s laugh and she’d play
She’d lead me astray
So little was I at ease

Though how she would dance
Left nothing to chance
I was the captive
Not her
All the sorrow she’d bring
When the church bells would ring
Her passing to always
Recur

Brave Anna was bright
With her eyes did she spite
The doubts of a man like I
I’d wish her away
Though never she strayed
Thus did she end her life

Oh yes I would say
Both night and in day
I am a man of loss…

THE OLD STANDING STONES – FIRST VERSE

THE OLD STANDING STONES (Both Versions)

Last week I sat down and wrote a song that I had originally intended for my Bard (his name is Larmageon and he is Welsh) to sing in one of my novels, the Basilegate. As a sort of a lament, and a dirge. It was supposed to be a rather dark song about a myth of a submerged city off the coast of Ireland that rises every so often at midnight on Samhain and the city is populated by ancient dead warriors. It was a symbolic dirge of a supposedly lost song that the Bard then used to analogously lament what had happened to his friends. That is the first version of the song/poem you see below.

Thereafter I looked at the song and said to myself, “This really is close to an Irish/Welsh real myth and I should rewrite this song as a real world song or poem.” So I did using real Irish/Celt/Welsh place and symbolic names. That version, the second version, came out to be much brighter and more upbeat, but the tempo is changed slightly. By the way after the less well known Gaelic names or terms I included, in parentheses, the more original pronunciations, and their meanings.
I like both versions but the first is a far more generalized version written for an English audience and specifically for my book. The second version is really more of a throwback Irish mythological song.

So that being said, which do you like best?

Or do you think I should keep and use, perhaps for different purposes, both versions? Or does one version strike you as good and the other bad? Let me know what you think and anyone is welcome to comment.
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THE OLD STANDING STONES (version 1)

The old standing stones
Where the ghosts all still roam
Below the Seas of Sarsa
Submerged neath the Mere
They all still come here
To haunt the tides of Current
The walls in the waves
The moon long enslaved
Both shine so like the Danaan
The People long passed
The present now past
Upon the Road of Waters
Formorian chants
Who sings of the chance
That tombs are remade Towers?
The barrows below
The streams that bestowed
The last Great Ship of Showern
To the old standing stones
Still guarding the road
Beneath the flood of Faran

Oh can you still hear
The chants and the cheers
When Chulainn took the Island?
And do you still dance
Or sing the Romance
Of the last men still left standing?

Submerged neath the waves
Deep waters their graves
The Green-men go a’feasting
The blue in their blood
The tides and the flood
Their numbers all decreasing
The stars brightly gleam
The moon often seen
To kiss the Ring of Rona
Yet still can you hear
If the night is all clear
The Lost Hope of Ilona
So tell me of old
Of the place far below
Of the dark halls deeply downing
Where the old standing stones
Still guard the last road
To the Hall of Sorrow’s Drowning…

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THE OLD STANDING STONES (version 2)

The old standing stones
Where the ghosts all still roam
Below the Seas of Saorla (Say-la – the noble queen)
Submerged neath the Mere
They all still come here
To haunt the tides of Cara (meaning, the friend)
The walls in the waves
The moon long enslaved
Both shine so like the Danaan

The People long past
The present now passed
Upon the Road of Una (Oo-nah, or Wony, meaning unity, or lamb)
Formorian chants
Who sings of the chance
That the tombs are to be Towers?

The barrows below
The streams that bestowed
The last Great Ship of Tara (tower, or crag)
To the old standing stones
Still guarding the road
Beneath the flood of Fallan (grandchild, or grandchild of the chieftain)

Oh can you still hear
The chants and the cheers
When Chulainn took the Island?
And do you still dance
Or sing the Romance
Of the last men still left standing?

Submerged neath the seas
Their limbs now at ease
The Gweneth men go feasting (Gweneth – fair or river men)
The blue in their blood
The tides and the flood
Their hall a loudly singing
The stars brightly gleam
The moon often seen
To kiss the Ring of Roise (roh-suh – a rose)
Yet still can you hear
If the night is all clear
The Last Hope of Isleena (Ish-leena – vision, the foretelling)
So tell me of old
Of the place far below
Of the dark halls deeply moaning
Where the old standing stones
Still abide all alone
In the Hall of Sorrow’s Gloaming…

BETWEEN – FIRST VERSE

This is a song (well, the lyrics anyway) I wrote over this past weekend. It includes two neologisms as part of the lyric set.

 

BETWEEN

Between the fire and the flood
Between the mire and the mud
Between the briar and the blood
There is no other one like you

I’ve been a million empty miles
I’ve seen a million other smiles
Still there are no other wiles
That work upon me like you do

I wish that I could get away
I wish that you were here today
What else can I say?
It’s all a lie, and yet all true

Between the fire and the flood
Between the why not and the was
Between the bire and the bud *
A flower grows in barren soil

You know we never were complete
Until we could admit defeat
All that time we let retreat –
The labor and the toil

I wish that I could get away
I wish that you would ever stay
What else is there left to say?
These alibies will never do

Yet still the ember burns
Yet still the pages turn
And yet still the ground is churned
Can that all just be for me?
Or is that all because of you?

One day our world will come
One day the depths will plumb
Whatever’s left will sum
So that both of us will see –
Between the fire and the flood
Between the mire and the mud
Between the byer and the blood ^
They’ll be you
And they’ll be me…

* bire – the well-worn path by which one goes to visit the grave of a deceased loved one, or one that one regularly treads in the expectation or hope of seeing something or someone previously lost or disappeared. Similar to a bierbalk but one walks this path with the expectation that one will see the dead one again. Path of Resurrection.

^ byer – one who says goodbye, but only temporarily. Also a seemingly coincidental occurrence but one suggesting a definite but unseen cause, “by the byer.”

DON’T DIE

I’ve had a series of serious personal problems to deal with lately (floods and storms in SC that damaged my house, my daughter was struck by a – probably drunk – hit and run driver who totaled her car, etc.) which I’ll explain in detail later on. Everyone is okay but the house is damaged and my daughter’s car was destroyed. Anyway that has prevented me working properly (I’ve been putting out fires and settling insurance claims) and has delayed me blogging.

Night before last however, for the first time in weeks I was able to work uninterrupted and I started three songs and wrote a piece of flash fiction. So here is part of a song I started two nights ago called Don’t Die. It is unfinished but I got pretty far along on it.

 

DON’T DIE

Don’t die in the leaving son
Don’t die at the dawn
Don’t die in the coming home
Don’t die while you’re gone

There’s a long, long way between here and there
There’s a short step between the night and grave
I wish I could tell you differently son
But that’s just the way the world is made

I went out when I was young, so deep into the dark
I saw things there I didn’t want, things so sharp and hard
I wish I could tell ya differently son
But believe me when I tell you now, I got the scars

Careful where you go now son
Careful when you’re coming back
Go there when there’s no one else
Go there when you can’t be tracked

Oh, the things I’d show you if you’d see
How far away from everything
How very close to me

Don’t die in the leaving son
Don’t die in the dusk
Don’t die in your wand’ring round
Just do what you must

And come back
Yeah come back,
Come back to me…

FOREIGN LANDS – FIRST VERSE

FOREIGN LANDS

The old things and the new things
You think they’re not the same
And yet they both are constant
And yet they both remain
A measure of the manner
By which all things are made
When more or less the answer
Is the last place that we laid
Our hearts upon the altar
Our flesh in foreign lands,
Our souls a’drift through nowhere
So we could not understand

Chorus

Oh come and see us stranger
Oh come to see us friends
You’ll find us at the end of things
The place we all begin,

Home is endless miles away
Though always where we are
We started out for paradise
But never got that far…

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This is a new song I began over the weekend. It is not yet completed, I just started on it.

THE DARK ROAD – FIRST VERSE

It has been awhile since I’ve posted a set of my song lyrics. I’ve been so busy with my two start-ups and my novel that I’ve had very little time to write any new songs. But here is part of one I recently started for Halloween and which I like. It is unfinished as at the moment I am pressed for time…

DARK ROAD

There’s a dark road through the old woods
Ain’t never lost a man they say
But if a man can’t find his soul
He’d best just go another way

The witches ride the moon each night
The snakes they slide the mud
What can’t be seen hides in your sight
Like shadows in your blood

A cabin green with moss and things
That no man seems to know
Creeping up the hidden graves
Those dead things from below

Well it’s a Dark Road
A Dark Road that men don’t know
A Dark Road, no road above but down below
There’s a Dark Road,
You can find me there
If you ever dare –
No way back through the poisoned air
Or the black despair
Of the Dark Road,
Oh you just don’t know
Where ya gonna go
On the Dark Road

GOOD LORD, I DID IT

I’ve been having to spend a lot of time on the internet this past weekend, yesterday, and today (time I would have rather spent doing other things, but this was necessary) rearranging the work on my literary blog so as to make it easier for agents, publishers, business partners, investors, etc. to locate my work in a single locale.

I did have my stuff scattered about on various “categories” on my blog(s) but that was apparently making it hard for agents and others to review my stuff. So on each blog I created a new category entitled: MY WRITINGS AND WORK

Now anyone can find anything I have created, written, or posted on my blogsites with a single click. This should be much, much more efficient and useful.

But it has been hard work to go back through all of my old posts, locate my work, and collate it into a single on-line collection.

So it has taken days (literally) of search, edit, and reorganize. But I’m halfway done with Wyrdwend, my literary blog, and as of now my new category/collection contains 88 pieces of my work. Including such things as my short stories, poetry, children’s stories, children’s books, songs, invention sketches, business articles, criticisms, scripts, graphic novels, essays, novel extracts, game designs, etc.

Whatever I have so far put up.

I figure when I finally finish with my archives by the end of the week the category/collection/link will contain about 160 or so pieces of original work.

Once that is done I’ll do the same for all of my other blogs, including Launch Port, Tome and Tomb, and the Missal.

By the way here is the collection link: MY WRITINGS AND WORK

AFRICAN ANGEL – FIRST VERSE

I wrote this song two weekends ago. I was driving home one evening when the first few lines occurred to me. I worked on it for three days before finishing the lyrics.

This is the first song I’m publishing on my publishing schedule First Verse. Hope you like it.

I dedicate it to my wife, who although she is not African, she’s American, her ancestors were African. If you wish let me know what you think of it.

AFRICAN ANGEL *

Skin so soft, smell so sweet
Hair so dark, eyes so deep
Wish I knew just what you were
I think that once I might have heard

Of African angels

Yes, African angels

I wonder now if you might be…
An African angel

Your lips invite, rich and full
Whisper me a miracle
I want to know just who you are
Are you the same or similar…

To an African angel?

Some African angel?
Where will I go
Having been with you
When will I know
If this is true?
When will you prove
What I think I know
That you heard above
When I prayed below

For an African angel

Yes, an African angel
Oh, where can I go
Once I’ve seen you
When will I know
If this is true?
When will we
Take up your wings
See if we don’t both agree
You’re doing everything

Like an African angel

Well, I dreamt of gold and Zanzibar
Of silver seas and endless stars
The nights were black the moon was bright
You smiled at me, I saw the light

Of an African angel

My African Angel

My African Angel…

 

* Note: the artwork is not mine but by a very talented artist by the name of Kerry Rockwood White

see here: http://fineartamerica.com/art/digital+art/african+american+angels/all

 

IT’S NOT JUST WHAT YOU SAY, IT’S WHAT YOU IMPLY BY OMISSION

This statement is entirely true: “It’s what is left out of the song that keeps us coming back for answers.”

This image, and the accompanying lyrics, are superb examples of this.

Lyric Of The Week: Traditional, “Barbara Allen”

Written by March 9th, 2015 at 8:40 am

Forget_Me_Not_Songster_-_Barbara_Allen_p.1It’s been beguiling audiences for a half-millennium or so, perhaps longer than that. It’s been covered by artists ranging from the sublime (Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, The Everly Brothers) to the slightly ridiculous (John Travolta and, in the 1951 Warner Brothers short “Robin Hood Daffy”, Porky Pig.) So what is it about “Barbara Allen” that makes it so enduring and affecting?

The first known reference to this mysteriously captivating folk ballad dates back to 1666, in an entry by the famed English diarist Samuel Pepys. Pepys called it a “Scotch song”, and it flourished throughout the United Kingdom in that era until it was brought to the U.S. by immigrants. As the population of the America slowly spread westward, the song went with it, as noted by famed musicologist Alan Lomax in his book The Folk Songs Of North America. “This ballad, if no other, travelled west with every wagon,” Lomax wrote. “As someone remarked, they sang ‘Barbara Allen’ in Texas ‘before the pale faces were thick enough to make the Indians consider a massacre worthwhile.”

What transpires in “Barbara Allen” is simple enough on the surface. Yet since the lyrics provide little exposition or back story, the reasons for the behavior of the main participants are enigmatic. The song tells the story of young William who, as he lies on his deathbed, calls out for Barbara. She takes her time getting to his side, only to treat him coldly due to a social foul he committed against her at a tavern. On her journey home, she hears the “death bell knellin” and, knowing it tolls for William’s death, suddenly regrets her hardness and knows she will soon die of grief for him.

Harsh stuff, right? Maybe too harsh, even for audiences who were used to Shakespeare’s plays and their numerous deaths. As such, a variant on the song quickly arose that included a leavening epilogue whereby the lovers are buried side-by-side. From William’s grave grows a rose, from Barbara’s a briar, and the two flowers eventually intertwine, providing the deceased pair eternal unison.

It’s whats left out of the song that keeps us coming back for answers. If all William did was drink a toast to the wrong ladies, surely he didn’t deserve treatment so nasty from a girl he truly loved. Or was this single incident indicative of his wayward behavior as a whole? And what changed in Barbara’s mind and heart from the time she left him to when she heard that bell? In that short journey, she transformed from hard-hearted to sympathetic without any middle ground spent in consideration of all that had transpired.

This sort of unexplainable behavior from characters was also emblematic of Shakespeare (think King Lear or Hamlet), so maybe the original writer had that kind of strangeness in mind. It makes the song more psychologically realistic, since we all tend to do things when guided by passion or spite that defy logic and reason.

The murkiness of the motives and the beauty of the melody is an irresistible combination. As such, many legendary contemporary artists have found the song irresistible. Dylan, for one, not only covered “Barbara Allen” at various times in his career, but he also used Barbara’s home base of “Scarlet Town” as a jumping-off point for an equally mysterious song on 2012’s Tempest.

While there have been many powerful and moving renditions of “Barbara Allen”, Art Garfunkel may have given the definitive modern reading on his 1973 solo album Angel Clare.  Whatever lesson you take from the song, whether it’s that even a moment of taking the one you love for granted can come back to haunt you, or that life is too short for petty grievances, you’ll likely be mesmerized by the mercy Garfunkel’s ethereal vocal grants these two lovers. It’s just too bad they didn’t show each other that same kind of mercy until it was far too late.

NEW PUBLICATION SCHEDULE

NEW PUBLICATION SCHEDULE

Recently I have been involved in a number of different projects that have left me little time for blogging. I have been writing the lyrics for my second album, Locus Eater, I have been writing and plotting my novel The Basilegate, I have been putting together a crowdfunding project for one of my inventions and one of my games, I have been helping with and compiling material for my wife’s new career as a public speaker, and helping my oldest daughter prepare to enter college. In addition I have been speaking with and seeking a new agent. I have even been preparing a new paper on some of the work of Archimedes and what I have gleaned from it. Finally I have been preparing my Spring Offensive, which is now completed.

All of which have kept me extremely busy.

However I have not been entirely ignoring my blogging either. In background I have been preparing a much improved Publication Schedule for all five of my blogs, my business blog Launch Port, my design and gaming blog Tome and Tomb, my personal blog The Missal, my amalgamated blog Omneus, and this blog,  Wyrdwend.

Now that most of these other pressing matters are well underway and on an even keel this allows me more time to return to blogging.

So below you will find my new Publication Schedule which I’ll also keep posted as one of the header pages on my blogs.

So, starting on Monday, March the 15th, 2015, and unless something unforeseen interferes this will be the Publication Schedule for this blog every week, including the Topic Titles and the general list of Subject Matters for that given day. That way my readers can know what to expect of any given day and what I intend to publish for that day. I will also occasionally make off-topic post as interesting material presents itself.

 

Wyrdwend – 11:00 – 12:00 AM

Monday: First Verse – Poem, Song, Music
Tuesday: Tuesday’s Tale – Short Story, Children’s Story, etc.
Wednesday: Highmoot – Reader Discussions and Commenting, Reblogs
Thursday: Hammer, Tongs, and Tools – Tools, Linked In, Essay, Non-Fiction, etc.
Friday: Bookends – Serialized Novel, Graphic Novel, Script
Saturday: The Rewrite – Reblog best Personal Posts, Review
Sunday – Sabbath

 

GUILD OF THE GOLDEN DOOR

GUILD OF THE GOLDEN DOOR

I searched for the Guild of the Golden Door
Across the Fields of Filidhic Lore
To the House of the Wights who shielded the Scop
Neath the blouse of the night through the tales that crop

When grown under moon, and groaned under woe
Sprout slew from the Earth, as above, so below
Then the Master’s Apprentice to servitude bent
Broke under sentence, in fervor all spent

(Chorus)

Guild of the Golden Door
Gild yourself in guilt
All the wrongs adorned
All the harm you’ve built

Guild of the Golden Door
Gate of the ruined hoard
Facade of the secret morn
That dawns on the desperate horde

Golden Door, Golden Door
Hide and then reveal
Guilded Door, Gilded Door
Open wide, conceal

I sought for the Guild of the Golden Door
In the high merchant hills and the long shipping shores
I went to the banks that circled the world
Found all was lank loss, not a swine for a pearl
All the gain hidden, and all the made-men
Chains long forbidden, the same once again

Golden Door, Golden Door
Open, hide, conceal
Guilty Door, Giltied Door
Despised in your appeal

I watched for the Guild of the Golden Door
In the streets of the cities, in the eyes of the poor
It would not appear, was disguised far too well
The shrewd financiers were as crafty as hell

Guild of the Golden Door
Gate of the wasted hoard
Arch of what comes before
The birth of the desolate horde

I tried for the Guild of the Golden Door
Heard they governed the Halls of the Temple Floor
Found them buying and selling dressed in their rags
Pretending to credit; deceit, theft, and swag
All the pain ridden, your principles thrown
You claim to be bidden, you’ve purchased your thrones
Disguised by your voices, a’swim in your vice
Covet your choices, then play them like dice

Guild of the Golden Door
What is it that you’ve built?
All the wrongs so long adorned
All the blood you’ve spilt

Guild of the Golden Door
Won’t you share your guilt?
Yes drink of the cup of your own reward
For all the blood you’ve spilt

You should drink of the cup of your own reward
By the door of the world you’ve built

 

 

THE CORRUPTION OF THE GUILD OF THE GOLDEN DOOR

This is my next song for FAWM.

I worked on this until about 3:00 one morning. Then went to bed and got up around 9:00 or so and worked it again. Finished it that day.

I’m pleased with the final product, though I may change it around a little more before I eventually post it to my blog and use it on my new album, Locus Eater. It came out to be a lot longer and far more complicated song than I had anticipated. (I had expected it to be a small song and the short tie in to the Myrddin’s Tower poem.)

Originally it was a song about government claims to be assisting the poor and they are really just disguised profiteers seeking to use government as their “Golden Door” for personal advancement. Using government tyranny to line their own pockets by deceiving the ignorant and the naive.

But eventually the song became about financial and monetary corruption in general (such as crony or socialistic-capitalism), and in all fields, but especially by those who openly pretend to be working on behalf of the poor but are actually using them (and everyone else around them, including their partners) for their own grasping, covetousness, and greed. Hence the corrupting aspect of the Golden Door , and the corruption of the song itself from my original intent.

I didn’t plan on the song going that way, it just did. It became much bigger than I had expected.

I still, at this point, plan to use it as the sister-song for Myrddin’s Tower but it may have grown far too big for that. It may have to stand entirely alone.

THE CAVE OF THE UNKNOWN PROPHET

This is my second song (the lyrics) for my FAWM project and my new album, Locus Eater. I finished this three days or so ago but didn’t have time to write it up on finalize it.

I’ve been behind because I started late (only recently heard of FAWM – though I was already gonna write a new album), because of power outages, and because of repair issues, and family health problems. But I’m still working it. So here ya go, The Cave of the Unknown Prophet.

THE CAVE OF THE UNKNOWN PROPHET

The Cave of the Unknown Prophet
Glittering and bold
The dust of ancient ages
Relics all foretold

The throne of sceptered tyrants
Cast down with a curse
A man to grind down mountains
Cut valleys in the Earth

I saw the prophet wander
Across the broken skies
The future all in labor
While ruined kingdoms died;
His cave the great circumference
Round which the world did turn
His name is now forgotten
Yet still his omens burn

Cave of the Unknown Prophet
Well of the Wasted Past
Womb of the Coming Ages
Born in the world at last

He spoke of Countless Wonders
If only we would heed
The things he heard in thunder
When the dawn was but a dream

I saw the prophet’s anger
When we ignored his voice
The present much endangered
By our reckless, selfish choice;
The wind it moaned at midnight
The seas they rolled in fear
Time shook like an earthquake
Ruptures soon appeared

He asked of man a miracle
That love might guide his hand
Not hatred, blood, and murder
To soil and taint the land, but

The cave of the unknown prophet
Was buried with the man
Whatever he had foreseen
Written in the sand

I’ve looked a thousand ages
To find it all within
There are no maps or pages
To lead me back again

I saw the prophet Wizened
With the burden of his Sight
He sought to warn of darkness
We never saw the light

The Cave of the Unknown Prophet
Does he sit there waiting still
For us to finally answer, and
His words to be fulfilled?

BABA YAGA STANZAS

Some of the experimental stanzas for my song Baba Yaga on my new album Locus Eater.

…Bind me in a chain of gold
With silver teeth to chew your babes
Fires, wolves, and howling ghosts
I bred (or bled) the Witches Crone and Queen
Baba Yaga, yarn and thatch
A trap of thorns, a bowl of blood
Baba Yaga, dark and dread
I’ll stitch (or break) your bones inside my hutch…

BABA YAGA and THE CAVE OF THE UNKNOWN PROPHET

Well, I got registered with FAWM (which I only became aware of on Monday) and started work on my first two songs: Baba Yaga, and The Cave of the Unknown Prophet.

It’s not really so much of a songwriting contest as a songwriting/album creation version of NaNoWriMo.

Both songs will be for my new album Locus Eater.

LOTUS EATER

LOCUS EATER

Edit: I have changed the name of the album from Lotus Eater to Locus Eater.

Baba Yaga (The Dead Witch)

Barden and the Serpent (The Viking Ship)

Cave of the Unknown Prophet

Cumhaill’s Causeway (Clochán an Aifir)

Fall of Sisyphus

Gram’s Glass

Hephaestus and Prometheus (The Tyrant’s Overthrow)

Isle of the Invisible Darkness

Myrddin’s Castle – longest song

Myrddin’s Tower – spoken poem with musical background

The Four Rivers of Paradise

The Rape of Medusa

The Spider and the Bones – short instrumental

The Storm of Tiamat – long multi-instrument instrumental

Vadd’s Desperation

Wendel’s Curse

White Stag – medium length guitar instrumental

I’ve bene thinking about doing this for awhile and last week, while out and driving around I began sketching out the titles and notes for a new album of songs I’m going to write.

Last year I finished writing my first album of songs, a country album I call “Going South.”

This year I’ve decided to do something I’ve been meaning to do for a long time but never got around to. Writing an album of rock, art rock, and hard rocks songs in the style of music from the 1970’s (if you ask me the most productive and artistic era of American music in history).

This will be my homage and tribute album to the best rock music of the 70s (and 60’s – Tales of the Brave Ulysses, etc.) although there will also be ballads and instrumental pieces and some experimental and even some Prog Rock pieces (Emerson, Lake, and Palmer).

It will be called “Locus Eater.”

I have listed the songs in alphabetical order as I haven’t yet decided on any kind of arrangement. These are the songs I have decided to include at the moment. It may change as I develop the album. It will be a double album of course, and loosely, even a concept album.

Many of the songs will be in written in these general types of styles, though the lyrics will be considerably different:

WATCH AND SEE

These are the lyrics to a new Blues song I wrote this past weekend. Actually I wrote this song, and two new poems (When Night is No More, and First the Enemy, Then The Fool) on the same day, but I only finished the song that day. The poems I didn’t finish until Sunday night.

Then last night I rewrote and edited the song and put it into its final form. I’m really pleased with the way it turned out.

WATCH AND SEE

Well you ain’t got nothin in you
And you ain’t left nothin out
I’m telling you now baby
Even if you scream and shout
That I won’t just come a runnin
Cause you make a fuss
You don’t do nothin baby
But a’ mess around with us

So throw your temper tantrums
Or curse us both by name
Don’t make no difference to me
It all comes out the same

But if you want me round ya
Then you better tighten up
I’m telling you now baby
Your time with me is up

Well you play the fool in public
You act the witch at home
You feed me all your poison
Then you won’t leave me alone
You ask me where I’m going
When I try to get away
I’ll tell ya, “not your business
Just sit right there and stay!”

You tell me that you’re coming
But I tell you not with me
I’mma headed somewhere diff’rent
Ain’t you smart enough to see?

Cause if you stay around me
Then you better loosen up
I’m telling you now baby
That your time is almost up

Yeah, you tell me that you’re coming
But I tell ya not with me
I’mma heading somewhere diff’rent
That’s the way it’s gonna be!
Yeah I’m heading somewhere diff’rent woman
Just you watch and see…

LIVING THE BLUES – a song

LIVING THE BLUES

Ain’t got no future
Ain’t got no past
You’re through with me
I’m through with you
Ain’t got no reason
But I got proof
I’m livin the blues
Cause baby, come high or low
I’m livin, oh must be dying
Living with you
But,
Still, ain’t got no future
Ain’t got no past
Done thought about it
Can’t make it last
Now, ain’t that a shame
Don’t know what to make
Of this…
This mess o’ ours
Now, this ain’t good
This sho ain’t right
But I ain’t gonna fight
No mo about it
Cause baby, I’m living the blues
You know it’s true
Now woman
You bringin the blues
Ain’t got no reason
But I got proof
Don’t matter the season
Cause you tha proof
I’m living the blues
Woman, don’t you know
I’m livin, ought not be trying
To live with you…

Living Proof (by Buddy Guy) inspired me to write a new Blues Song of my own, Living the Blues (even though they’re on completely different subjects), which I did while I waited on the girls. Or I wrote 90% of it anyway. I’m going to edit, rewrite, and finish it today. Everyone who has read it so far really seems to like it.

Over the weekend after listening to the whole Guy CD I also began to write four inter-related songs which I call the “Bad Road” songs. I was going to call the first song, Hot Sun on a Bad Road. But then as I started writing lyrics I got the idea for a set of four related “bad road” songs, each dealing with a different point on the compass. All will deal with a similar theme, a bad woman who leads a man in the wrong direction.

So now I intend to call the songs: Bad Road Down South, Cold Road North, East Road to Nowhere, and Hard Road West.

The South song will be about a Black woman, the North song about a blue-eyed blonde, the East road about a green-eyed brunette (jet black hair, a Witchy woman) or possibly a red-head, and the West road about (possibly) an Hispanic woman, though I’m still thinking on that one.

I’ve got about two thirds of Bad Road Down South written, and sketch notes for the other songs already developed.

HARD LOVE (a song)

Woman you got hard love
The kind that cuts and bleeds
Woman you got hard love
The kind I’m gonna need
Woman you got hard love
Make it sting and burn
Woman you got hard love
Make me twist and turn

Woman want your love
Woman want it now
Woman you ain’t near as tough
As you pretend no how,
Yes you’re mean and angry
But you’re lonely too
I’m the man with love so strong
I’ll fix what’s wrong with you

Woman I got hard love
Love so hard it breaks
Whatever’s down inside of you
Let’s see what you can take
Woman I got hard love
You ain’t seen nothing yet
I’ll get so deep inside of you
Be begging me to quit…

BROKE AGAINST EACH OTHER

Speaking of songs, here is one I wrote about a year back or so.

 

BROKE AGAINST EACH OTHER

The part without the whole
One day we both will know
How that works, and why it never does

The night without the day
Sometimes we both will say
That such a thing can never be, yet is

The man who lost his heart
How do I even start
To tell you when it went, and never did

The woman lost her soul
One long night and all is told
To everyone who saw her eyes, and yet

the solitary part without the hole
is the only one of us still looking
for all the pieces we left behind
that day we fell between ourselves
and broke against each other.

THE LORD OF TABLES

I post this as one of my Halloween posts for this year.

This is a fable in verse I wrote about one of the characters in some of my novels (The Other World). He is called The Lord of Tables because he keeps a stronghold in which no war or discord is allowed and he freely fetes and entertains many (from his seemingly inexhaustible stores), even those who are notorious and devotedly sworn enemies of one another.

His home seems a place of sanctuary and feasting and goodwill, and indeed it is, but underneath it all the Lord of Tables is engaged in a long-flowering and on-going Act of Justice which will one day break forth in a terrible setting to rights of all of the wrongs that have ever come to his notice.

The Lord of Tables is called such by others because they see him as a “table-maker,” a man of great hospitality. He calls himself the Lord of Tables because to him the title is a metaphor implying basically the same thing as the Scales of Justice. And one day the Lord of Tables hopes to “turn the tables” and therefore achieve his true end.

The poem below, which the Lord of Tables wrote himself about himself (actually I wrote it, of course, but in the book he writes it about himself), is designed to be either recited or sung at the various feasts which he hosts.

It seems a very innocuous and innocent poem/song until you know his actual and real intent. Then almost every line is “spiced and seasoned” with an underlying and very ominous meaning. The song is in truth not a recounting in verse of what is happening at the moment, but is actually a poetic prophecy of things to come.

The poem is therefore a coded warning of the Lord’s future and truer intentions.

The Lord of Tables is a very accomplished poet and minstrel in his own right, but thinks of himself first and foremost as an instrument of long-delayed Justice, while others think of him merely as a generous and compliant and diplomatic King and peace-maker.

The Lord of Tables never recites or sings the last 4 stanzas of his Song, he only ever sings or allows to be sung the first 8 stanzas of his Song to those he fetes and feasts. He has never sung or recited the last four stanzas to anyone; he keeps those in secret reserve for his Day of Justice.

One day however, when the time is right, he shall gather all of his guests together in his “Hording Halls” and sing the last four stanzas of his Lay.

Then he shall lay on thick and bloody with Justice, and many will eat their fill and far more than their appetite can withstand.

 

THE LORD OF TABLES

I spice my ales, I spice my wine
My bread I make with honeyed rhymes
I spice my beer with mint and thyme
My meat I sauce with sweets and brine

My greens I grow to touch the sky
My fruit trees flower day and night
My soups on fires boil to heights
That feed my foes to my ally

My table it is amply lain
With treats aplenty, lack allayed
Desire too is swift arrayed
Then conquered there ‘til naught remain

My drink it quenches every thirst
As all who taste it will confer
Seasoned as the guest prefers
So potent that the skins will burst

My grapes are sharp, both strong and tart
My vineyards yield without regard
No dearth grows there, no discard
Nothing lost or set apart

My cheeses mellow in their vault
Their taste like silvered dewdrops wrought
Their ken and kine both dearly bought
I treasure them against assault

Some come to feast where I make keep
I gather them in halls to heed
That none may hunger or know need
A Hoard of Plenty, high and steep

Some though come to me to fast
I serve them true as they have asked
Yet seeing all the goods that bask
Upon my table wont won’t last…

Secret Stanzas:

Songs are sung as men do fête
Contests fair of measured state
Marque these men in their estates
To see which evidences fate

Shouts and roars of merriment
Oaths are called, while some are sent
Deep beyond all banishment
To be stored with my consent

Now King I am of fruitful fare
Others think me mild as air
Because I share with no despair
My bounty’s gain without compare

Yet what they know not as I sit
This Lord of Tables none abets
To forget the wrong I’ll set
To right forever – not acquit.

THE LONELY SIDE OF TOWN – or, Blood Moons Must Be Good For Me

One last one for the night. I just took Sam for a walk under the rising Blood Moon (out of the East, you know, the old “There’s a Blood Moon on the rise…”) when I started writing a song in my head. Just kinda spontaneously. Guess the moon triggered it, or at least spurred it on.

By the time we got back to the house I had already written one stanza and committed the chorus to memory.

So, it ain’t finished yet but I’m very pleased with the start. Again, don’t known what genre it will be, I’m thinking slow, moody, soft-rock piece, lonesome with a little blues and a slow, dark guitar run around the middle. Yeah, I could live with that. Already got a few ideas for a tune.

Like I said, it’s far from finished but as far as my overall work-load goes, not bad for one day: a full song, a half-song, more on my Conan short story, progress on my novel, some fine advances on an invention, a separate new invention idea, a good work-out, and a few decent blog posts.

Blood-Moons must be good for me.

 

THE LONELY SIDE OF TOWN

There’s a lonely side of town
Where I still see your ghost
Looking out the windows
Walking down the street

Your voice still haunts the cafes
The boardwalk by the bay
I just can’t see past you
No matter who I meet

Baby it’s been lonely
Don’t know where you’ve gone
Can’t say that I blame you
Knew it all along
But when the night surrounds me
And you’re not around
Everywhere I go becomes
The lonely side of town…

WHERE WOULD I GO – a song

I thought that I would be alone
Then found myself with you
My heart was just a helpless thing
That passed away like dew
Beneath the sunrise of your love
Yes, you know it’s true
Beneath the sunrise of your love
What did you do?
I need you too

I thought that I would find myself
Without a child or wife
Sure that nothing but myself
Would ever be my life, but
Then you took me in your hand, and
Took me as I am
You made me better than I was
Made me a better man
Than long ago
So long ago

Help me now to understand
Help me now to live
Help me now to take these things
And grow them as you give
Yourself to me
Yourself to me

I’ve always been a lonely man
That never bothered me
You never know how far to go
If you have never been
My soul was just a wanderer
That never had a home
Until you took me in my dear, and
Now I never roam
Where would I go?
Where would I go?

I’ve always said and it’s still true
That somehow this would work
That sometimes it would be a breeze, and
Sometimes it would hurt, but
Either way, just name the day,
I won’t be going far away
From you
I’m not alone
Alone with you
No, not alone
When I’m with you

So help me now to understand
Help me now to live
Help me now to take these things
And grow them as you give
Yourself to me
You’re all I need

Yes, all I need

THE WRATH OF WROTHCHOLIRE

Two nights ago I wrote a poem (As We Age) and then started working on the fragments for The Wrath of Wrothcholire. Wrothcholire is an indestructible sword that appears in my high fantasy writings comparable to Gram and Durandal and Caliburn (Excalibur) in myth and legend.

It was forged of dark red (blood red) meteoritic rock but when finished the blade came out to be black and scored with an odd pattern and design. As far as is known the blade cannot be broken but will bend and flex. It is easy to sharpen and will hold an edge for many combats. Wrothcholire goes all the way back to my teenage years and was my imagined embodiment of the “perfect sword” and “ideal personal weapon.”

Wrothcholire is said (by those who have wielded him, and many famous heroes over several ages have wielded him) to possess a will or intelligence of his own, not that it can speak but rather that it will impel it’s bearer to great anger and fury if it desires the destruction of an enemy.

Wrothcholire (and this is the English name for the Sword, it has many different Eldeven names and names in other tongues) means wroth, or wrath, and choleric, and iresome. It also means, from the root terms, twisted (because of the pattern in the metal), to writhe (because of it’s seeming to writhe like a serpent when angered), and riven.

Wrothcholire is never said to be owned, but rather borne or that it’s user “bears the wrath of Wrothcholire upon and within himself.”

This goes back to when I was a young man and would become intensely angry and dangerous and do things I later deeply regretted. So also is Wrothcholire. Wrothcholire often pushes its bearer to fearsome and even horrible deeds, and sometimes even close to murderous deeds. Wrothcholire is really my own personified Fury, both a source of great strength for me, and probably my greatest lifelong vice. It took me a long time to conquer my own Wrothcholire, and a few bearers over time do tame the blade and they become lifelong friends. Many others Wrothcholire uses as much as they use him.

I have over time written many shorts stories involving Wrothcholire, in which the weapon appears either overtly as itself, or covertly and in disguise, but recently the idea has occurred to me to write some poetic fragments about the blade that I will eventually combine into either recited Skaldic verse or a Bardic song, maybe both. In either case his Lay shall be called, “The Wrath of Wrothcholire.”

So last night I began that. Here is what I first devised:

No voice of life could he (Wrothcholire) engender
Yet Fury burned, a shining beacon
Within his wrath, a terror vengeanced
Yearned to make of his foe’s ending…”

Another stanza,

He writhed, he bled, the foeman fled
An ancient anger soon caught flame
The Whore of Heaven made a bed (or dug a grave)
Of endless night, and brutal shame…

Another set of verses

He brake the Drake
Did slay the Würm
An endless wound that would not heal
Far better had they perished both
Than in such anger ruthless killed…”

The last I composed,

The End of All Illness comes to he
Who in such fury burns so bright
This blade of death, so distant sent
Has pierced my heart, and now I’m spent (or, variantly, my soul is rent)

Wrothcholire is said to be the Blade of Nine Names.

As far as those who know of him he has had Nine Names over time, and I have translated them all into English.

The Nine Names of Wrothcholire:

Wrothcholire (Eternal Fury or Writhing Fury)

The Fell-Black Sword (from its color and twisted pattern)

The Sword of Starless Night (because when it kills it is said to “blanket the foe in a starless night.”)

The Blade of Fury (self-explanatory)

The Brand of Vengeance (also self-explanatory)

Battle’s Beacon (said because it forewarns the bearer that another soon intends to attack, even if the other pretends peace)

The Wound Eternal (said because it typically leaves a wound that will not heal in the foe, or it leaves a wound of anger in the bearer that will not pass)

The Serpent’s Snare (because it is a Würm-killer, or dragon and monster-slayer)

The Whore of Heaven (this is actually an English mistranslation of a Sidhelic name – the Sidhels call Wrothcholire the “Blood-Ore of Heaven” because of the meteoritic fragment from which it was forged, but this was later mistranslated into English as the Whore of Heaven, sometimes the Whorl of Heaven, because of its writhing, and the name stuck by repetition)

The Sword will figure prominently in some of my fictional works, such as my High Fantasy novels and myths.

I TOOK MY GUNS

My latest song. It will have a decidedly Western flavor. It’s a vengeance song – avenging a set of murders.

It’s unfinished but I plan to finish it tonight.

I TOOK MY GUNS

I took my guns to town with me
Riding rough like the wind
I came home too late to help
My neighbors were all dead by then

The night was cold the wind was hard
The fires burned, the coyotes roamed
My horse was spent but I was not
Murder and mayhem I won’t condone

Take your guns wherever you go
Take your guns so they will know
Take your guns whenever you ride
So you don’t have to abide
No more a this…

My gut was empty, my heart was stone
You don’t kill men in their own homes
Their ghosts still whispering in my ear
“Find them, get them, be what they fear”

Well the streets were barren, empty, dark
Everything stabled, doors all locked
Except for the Dead Pony
My revolvers both cocked

Take your guns wherever you go
Take your guns so that they know
Take your guns wherever you ride
So you can set right
The wrong that they did…

I swung down from the saddle
The streets were all mud
My horse stood his own ground
We both wanted blood

I kicked in the door, there he sat cold
Smiling and toothless, nursing his drink
I shot off his mouth
Cause whiskey ain’t cheap

YOU GET THAT WAY FROM TIME TO TIME

In the past three days I have written four poems (Three Strangers, Fall Is Not a Season, two untitled as yet), five songs (Waking in the Grave, I Took My Guns, A Hoard Did I Encounter, I’d Really Like to Know, one untitled so far), part of a new sci-fi short story (Proximal), dialogue for my novel (There is a Road), an essay, several aphorisms, 20 or so measures of music, made several blog and message board posts, started a couple of papers, outlined a new Ebook (The Trainable Man), sketched out part of a map, and wrote up part of an invention draft.

That’s a pretty good clip even for me.

For some reason I’ve just been hot over the past few days. You get that way sometimes.

SONG FRAGMENTS

These are some (lyrical) song fragments I’ve been playing around with lately.

 

AIN’T NOTHING

You seem all certain
I’ve nothing to spare
But I never worry
I never despair

Pain is the same game
I’ve always played
I’m telling ya baby
It’s the way that I’m made

____________________

Let’s lay down together
Just come to me now
We’ll both be much better
When we recall how

We’ve done this before babe, we’ve been all through this
Ain’t nothing to fight for, ain’t nothing to miss

____________________

THE WISHING ROAD

There was a long road without you, a long ways to go
Every mile we were missing, every turn in the road

Eight hundred miles and I never got close
A few more tomorrow to lighten this load…

I’m either always deployed or overemployed
At things that mean nothing, I’d rather avoid
But far away baby, as far as it gets
I’d rather be there, and I never forget

That this road that I’m running, this so far away
Ain’t never meant nothing, and sure ain’t the way
I wanted my road to run straight and true
I wanted it baby to lead straight to you

CHORUS:

I wish this road
were a thousand
miles shorter
I wish this road
never led anywhere
I wish this road only
went one direction
Back to you
Back to my home

GOT YOU

Part of a set of song lyrics I wrote this morning after my wife and I had a discussion on the couch during breakfast. The song is unfinished, of course, I’ll work some more on it this afternoon when I’ve got more time.

For now I’m pleased with this foundation.

GOT YOU

I got you right where you wanna be baby
Woman you ain’t never had it this good
Say what you want but your lips do the talking
Stay if you want, you’d leave if you could

But we both know where this leads
We both know what this is
We both are as certain as certain can be

Now that you got me right where you want me
Now that I got you this ain’t gonna quit

Well you got me to keep me, or is that the plan?
Woman I ain’t never had it this good
My head wants to leave but your legs do the stalking
Maybe I’ll stay till it’s all understood

If we both think “I got you”
And we both might be right
Then where is the door when this is all through?

Maybe there ain’t one where we might be going
Maybe there’s no road that we cannot choose

I COME A CREEPING…

I COME A CREEPING…

I come a creeping
Gun strapped to my side
I know where you are
My knife in my hand

I know it’s a trap
I don’t give a damn
I know who you are
But you don’t know me

It’s quiet and it’s dark
I’m silent and unseen
I’ve hunted other men
Much worse than you

Step out or hide away
Won’t make any difference which
I can sneak, I will stay
I can wait, and still I’ll creep

Get ready now, here I come
Look around, what do you see?
Listen hard, the old place creaks
And I’m still here

I come a creeping
Best knife in my hand
Loaded for bear
Though you’re just a wolf

Hide away or step on out
I’ve got no favorite
I’m coming on, I always do
We’ll finish this, I’ll finish you

Ambush on your mind
The same thing in mine
One of us will be better at it
One of us will be right

I’m crouching low
I’m moving slow
I smell you up ahead
I smile to myself

I know ‘bout your traps
I know what you think
I know what this is
I don’t plan to leave

And you won’t get the chance…

THE SONG SKYFALL

Since I’m on the film Skyfall tonight I thought I might make one more related post. As I said previously I thought Skyfall was the best James Bond film I’ve ever seen. And one of the more realistic as far as the analytical and detective work went. I even immensely enjoyed the theme music, the lyrics of which I later analyzed line by line.

I thought the song was fine for an “entertainment film theme” and even vaguely appropriate for the most part regarding the characterization, but the lyrics of the theme song had nothing whatsoever to do with real intelligence work nor did they have anything much to do at all with the plot of the film.

So about three months after the film came out on DVD I rented the film, made a line by line examination of the lyrics, thought about the film, and real intelligence work, and decided to largely rewrite the lyrics with those things in mind. The result is the set of lyrics you’ll see below which to me far more accurately reflect both the plot of the film and actual intelligence work, as opposed to just being a catchy film theme song.

I set these lyrics to run at the same tempo and to the same theme music (the musical composition itself – which I thought was well done) and to run for the same length of time as the introductory title theme song near the beginning of the film. But the lyrics are different of course.

_____________________________________________________

SKYFALL

So…

Where do we begin
Now that we know we’ve found the end?
I’ve seen them all and once again
I’ve lost the limits of my sins

For I know I cannot mend
Nor can I anymore pretend
You cannot take, I cannot lend
Does this truly make us friends?

When the sky falls
Come the thunder
When the night calls
You cannot get away

When the sky falls
Going under
When the truth palls
There is no coming day

Skyfall has come to us
I cannot say if this is just
I’ve wondered long who I might trust
This seems as if it must…

Just be the way it is

The dark is deep and long in me
You know this, even you can see
I cannot ask, you have no plea
This is the way it all must be…

When others come to look

You cannot know the rest
Just trust me
That is for the best

If you know my name
I cannot say
Wherever it will lead…

When the sky falls
It’s frightening
When your flesh crawls
I will not speak a lie

When the sky falls
Like lightening
When your voice calls
Come find me as you die

When the Sky Falls
When the Spooks crawl
When the night calls
Where will you go that day?

When the Sky Falls
When the Sky Falls
When the Sky Falls
When the Sky Falls

When does the SkyFall?

Neither one of us can say

Oh no we won’t…

 

MIDDLE LOVE

I want a little middle love
The kind that’s easy at the ends
The kind that starts before it does
The kind that borrows when it lends

I want a little middle love
So you can be my better half
So I can be a better man
So you can smile and I can laugh

Middle love, my middle love
You fit me like a well-worn glove
The softness when I hold you tight
The night is quiet, the moon is bright

Your middle love is never far
It wraps around me, keeps me here
Its outer edges mark my heart
So I won’t wander from you dear

I want a little middle love
To buy the future with our past
I want a little middle love
Because that is the kind that lasts

I want a little middle love
The kind that plays, then gently sleeps
My middle love, my truest love
Give your all, and all I’ll keep

Middle love, my middle love
You fit me like a well-worn glove
The gladness when I hold you tight
The stars come close to share your light

And I’m with you girl, here tonight…

SIDE SALAD GIRL

SIDE SALAD GIRL

Side salad girl you’re a nice looking sight
Side salad girl whatcha doing tonight?
Side salad girl won’t you order me up
Side salad girl come serve me close up

Chorus:

Side salad girl won’t you sprinkle your cheese
Side salad girl you can do as you please
Side salad girl you’re the best in the world
The salt and the pepper, your dressing’s awhirl

Side salad girl I come here for you
Side salad girl you must know it’s true
Your tomatoes are plump, your mushrooms are fine
I love all your fixins, wanna make em all mine!

Side salad girl let’s blow off this joint
Side salad girl I won’t disappoint
Just grab up your apron this order’s to go
You can cook in my kitchen and put on your show

Chorus:

Side salad girl let’s toss in the breeze
Side salad girl you can do as you please
Side salad girl you’re the best in the world
Your salad’s the freshest, your dressing’s awhirl

Side salad girl come live with me now
We’ll marry, I’ll keep ya, whatever’s allowed
My side salad girl you can do it up right
Let’s get this thing started, come serve me tonight!

EVERYONE

Today after working out I decided to take a short nap. Since the wife and kids were out seeing the Transformers I lay down in the bed with Sam (my Great Dane) for a nice, peaceful, quiet nap before my daughter’s birthday party started.

I didn’t sleep long (I wanted to sleep longer but couldn’t) until I woke up with a song running through my head. I heard both the music and the lyrics in my head. My mood was very, very odd. I never get depressed, though I do have intentionally melancholy moods from time to time (which I enjoy a lot), but this song and the music and the mood surrounding it seemed both very depressing and almost foreign, as if it were coming from someone else entirely.

Occasionally I will hear music and song lyrics in my dreams and then when I wake up I will write them down, but this song didn’t really start until after I woke and then it started immediately. As if I were listening to and just becoming aware of a radio on somewhere in the house, but nothing was playing.

And like I said the music, the tone, the mood, it all seemed very depressing to me. But mostly it seemed foreign, like it wasn’t me writing it, but someone else.

Nevertheless after I completed the song I made a Google lyrics search and could find no song similar to it. So I guess I didn’t remember it from elsewhere, it was just an odd, sorta alien song playing in my own head.

Anyway after writing the whole thing down in bed when Sam and I got up I came downstairs to my office and started hammering it out and arranging it properly. And overall I’m very pleased with the lyrics. It matches the music very well, which is moderately slow, rather simple, and sad in tone.

The single lines are the chorus and instrumental sections of the song, whereas the stanzas are the body, so it has a sort of reverse chorus-stanza structure. It may not be completely finished, but as far as I know at this moment, it is.

If you wish let me know what you think of it.

Jack.

_____________________________________________________

EVERYONE

Everyone you see is broken-hearted
Everyone you meet is sick like that
Everywhere you go the what-if’s started
Every song you sing seems like the last

Everyone, most everyone, has passed

I wish that I could dream in endless colors
Wish the sun would rise above my head
Wish that I could tell you from the others
Wish that you could hear just what I said

But being me is awful long and lonesome
Being me is hard as hell
Is there any way to beat this road home?
Is there any way for me to tell?

Everyone I meet has their own problems
Everywhere I go it’s all the same
Sinner, Saint, or child we’re all just odd-ones
Waiting for someone else to ease the pain

Seems like everyone knows everyone today

Now let me wander on to where I’m headed
There’s another day must come and go
Doesn’t mean I know, whoever said it,
“Everyone was happy long ago…”

AILEEN AROON

I rewrote the old song Aileen Aroon (something I will do on occasion) to create my own particular lyrical version. I followed the traditional arrangement (in meter, cadence, and rhythm) up to a point and then modified that arrangement to create this version. The lyrics vary rather widely from the older and more traditional versions.

Experiments like this make me a better poet and songwriter.

AILEEN AROON

When your fair heart
Arose – a Rose
Beauty by youth
Enclosed – reposed
Where our first love did stem
No loss could ever dim
Hopeless would not condemn,
Aileen Aroon

What of your face – your eyes – to I?
Lost in this place – your sighs – to I?
Is it your voice I hear,
Whispers I held so dear
Where is our ancient cheer?
Aileen Aroon

This day is passed
Aileen Aroon
Our secrets at last
Aileen Aroon
Love had her better way
Our hearts so long astray
What now can either say?
Aileen Aroon

I know a valley fair
Aileen Aroon
She once led me there
Aileen Aroon

Deep in that valley’s shade
Long slept my restless maid,
Her heart by love unmade
Aileen Aroon!

Where is the moon?
Aileen Aroon
Does it come soon?
Aileen Aroon

Lost in this fading light
Grows a forever night,
One that is never bright
Aileen Aroon

Oh, what a waiting maid
Heavy the sorrow made
When you to I abade
Aileen Aroon!

Who in their song – so weeps – so sweet?
Whoever’s strong – does seek – is meek
Dear are your charms to me
Deep as the churning sea
Longing in constancy
Aileen Aroon!

Were you never due
Aileen Aroon
The fault lies not with you
Aileen Aroon
I left my only heart unmade
Lost then to my gentle maid
Who now gives any aid –
Aileen Aroon?

Youth must to time – decay – away
Time must to you – this way – give way
Yet still my heart is true
Suffers no loss of you,
When will this night be through?
Aileen Aroon…

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