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Erlkönig: Heartssong II

Heartssong (and music) Copyright © 1985, 1988, 1989 Christopher Alexander North-Keys
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I sing the strands of mine own accord,
Blown soft by the love of the winds.
Even dragons on high leave my lay unscored;
My heart's song is mine, not Danaan's.

  1. "Elven eyes in the first breath of Fall;
    Green ramparts surround the mind's eye,
    Searching the winds, fast-fleeting and love-lorn,
    For a fair zephyr's singing on high.
  2. A fair, virgin wind sought the heart of the Eald,
    Tender and aware behind cold eldrich wards,
    A fey, noble melody maid-ensorcelled
    Willingly by wind-whispered words.
  3. A muse-born breeze and a dragon, young dreamer,
    Made love in the light of a far day's sun,
    Sailing through moon's light, fair fantasies' weaver--
    Their melding of souls just begun.
  4. The year's come full circle; the weaving goes onward
    Into the birth of a rose-fingered dawn.
    Laughing together they lift their hopes skyward,
    For the wind and the sea will love on. (1985 text jumps to Epilogue)
  5. Years fair have flown, a noble young triad; (1988 continuation starts here)
    Passion spun of moonlight, friendship by day.
    But time takes the Lovers' moon; the wind seeks light elsewhere,
    And the sea wakes, a black sun in sway.
  6. A breeze seeks the gardens, bright in the moonlight.
    Wonder of the new sings refrain.
    A far away Eald under elven moon waxing,
    Has small hope with mortal moon yet to wane.
  7. A feary path glistens, silver in moonlight,
    Do they fade forever, one dawn ?
    What of the last golden, that gleams in the sunlight,
    Can it survive, when the winds have passed on ?"

Th'elementals sing of their lives and their hearts;
I harp of the sword and the dove.
For others the tales of jewels and shards;
I give my heart's song to my love.


The poem was inspired in part by the world presented in the book Arafel's Saga, by C. J. Cherryh

 Middle of August.1985   Verses 1-4, Prologue and Epilogue
 Friday.d.8.January.1988 Verses 5-7
 To Janet Oncken
 Initially shared in alt.romance around 1989

Song is not a misnomer. The music is archaic, in g-minor, 6/8 duple meter. It strongly resembles Greensleeves in character.

The transition between verses 4 and 5 mark the transition from romance to something else. Until that point, the romance had been as strong as the friendship, and that friendship had been very strong indeed. But here the romantic side has begun to crumble, and the mystery of another has attracted the wind. This gardens are mortal, and manmade, and compare against the wild Eald as C-major against g-minor. The wind seeks the security implied by the neat hedges of the garden as its new home, needing the more blatant law and order there as reassurance of safety when the subtler (and more flexible) safety of the Eald proves too foreign.

There are hints in here over such as choosing a small, safe world over a safe haven in a rich world; over not being able to escape the views impressed upon a child by its environment in youth; over rating outward signs of stability above inward; over seeing magic as too much to reasonabably expect out of life. Above all, though, it does *not* advocate trying to hold someone seeking elsewhere.

If you love something set it free.
If it comes back, it's yours!
If not, it was never meant to be.

Perhaps the saddest thing is that some have to feel as though they were held, to believe the other truly cares.

But who can hold the wind? And who truly understands *anybody* well enough to judge? Even in love? Especially in love?


piece of music, ballad
to commit music to parchment
keltic deity
powerful, mostly prehistoric Keltic people, the Sidhe, Fair Folk. Rarely referred to directly, for fear of summoning one, the "Daoine Sidhe" is itself a euphemistic pun. Typically thought of as virtually immortal, closely connected to and protective of nature, beautiful, and deadly when provoked.
(cognate w/ Ger. "verloren") lost, alone, abandoned
(rel. to "elder", etc.) forest of old, more fey than mortal
(<?Ger) fey, mystical, unfathomable; of Eald or Faerie
protector. barrier
originally "made ensorcelled"
one of the nine muses, divine patrons of various discipines
pun on "bourne"
year's come
pun between "year has come" and "years come"; plural ambiguous
the Aeniad and the Odyssey used such motifs
personification of one of the four medieval elements: fire, earth, air, water, (spirit)
generally - romance (private)
generally - friendship (social)
Lover's moon
folklore - name for the new moon Making the night even more private by darkness, supposedly making lovers' trysts potentially even more intense and fey, unseen, and uncensorable.
fey, of Eald, of the elves, elven, (grandly cyclic)
elven moon
the moon of Eald. Seen by elves and fey mortals even as the elvish sun (a cooler sun) is seen. The elvish day is sometimes said to complement the mortal: Elvish day concurrent with mortal night, the elvish moon out in the mortal daytime.
transient, of man, (unicyclic)
(moonlit, symbolic of romance)
(sunlit, symbolic of friendship)
In the song proper;
References to persona one are as follows:
	(Preamble: P1 is the singer)
	Verse 1:      Elven...love-lorn;
	Verse 2:      Eald...wards, melody;
	Verse 3:      Dragon...dreamer;
	Verse 4:      Sea.
	Verse 5:      Sea.
	Verse 6:      Eald...wane;
	(Closing: P1 is the singer)
References to persona two are as follows:
	(Preamble: no specific reference)
	Verse 1:      (fair...singing refers to the gender of P2 generally)
	Verse 2:      Fair...sought, wind...words;
	Verse 3:      Muse...breeze;
	Verse 4:      Wind.
	Verse 5:      Wind.
	Verse 7:      (Winds).
	(Closing: to...love)
References to (nebulous) persona three are as follows:
	Verse 6:      Gardens, (the new), (mortal moon).

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