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The Lay of Morwen
Posted November 19th, 2009 - 1:28 pm by from Vancouver, Canada (Permalink)
The Lay of Morwen

Oh amulets of silver and of amethyst we wear
As long the years of wisdom from the mothers do we bear.

Come gather round my faeries for the tale that we're to tell
Come, set aside your spinning, let your hearts fall ‘neath the spell:
‘Twas long ago when Morwen sat beside the Elven King
That Agnes of the Darlings made for her a golden ring.

‘Twas in the days of darkness when the light of love did fail
When men and women drew apart and hope grew thin and frail,
‘Twas then that in the valley of the Darlings grew a maiden
Who set her heart to mend the peace or on her doom be laden.

The elven folk of old lived long and illness did not fear them
But in their hearts there grew a wall that love could not draw near them.
The elven men had turned away from truth and beauty coldly
And sought to find their souls' release in fighting battles boldly.

The hearths they left for tender care to women, though they scorned us,
And built their towers in cities fell and from our powers warned us.
So great did grow their folly that they bade us sing no loddies
And when our babes were scanty grown they stole them off to schoddies.

The times had grown so black and hard that no one spoke of faeries
Or sang in rhyme or played the string or danced to make them merry.
Our spells they spurned, our books they burned, our herblore they perverted
With 'quations dry they tried to hide their fears from truth diverted.

‘Twas into these dark times that Morwen bore anew the laughter
Of faerie halls afire with light and love from floor to rafter.
She planted in King Man'lom's mind a seed of joy and smallness
Of hidden things in secret woods to sway his mighty tallness.

His fascination with her charms beguiled his manly senses
Though long he held the moon at bay that flowed within her menses.
He kept her close and tightly bound until her soul did wither,
Then, in his fear of losing her, her sister he brought thither.


When Agnes of the Darling Vale beheld her kin so broken
She took her in her arms and sang of spells and faerie tokens,
Of birds and gentle waterfalls and children at their leisure
As long they walked in gardens damp and cool within that desert.

To Agnes Morwen poured her heart that Man'lom's world had tainted
She spoke of all the clever lies that men so cruelly painted
Of how the gifts and arts of womankind were scorned and hated
Of how they mocked our childhood dreams and fantasies berated.

Her tales were long in telling in the tears the years had robed them
As Morwen with her heart so fine so deeply had absorbed them.
She plumbed the chasms of the night with Agnes there beside her
And loosed the weight of grief and loneliness that grew inside her.

Then Agnes drew away again with Morwen's heart within her
And Morwen too returned to life to woo the silent spinner.
The King was pleased to see his woman smile again and warm him
Though little still he paid her heed and thought her songs to charm him.


To Darling Vale did Agnes hie where women's hearth had tarried
And there from Morwen's veil of tears a thread of light she carried.
For hidden in the lies of men and glimmering though they drowned them
Could still be seen the mists of gold with spirit ghosts around them.

Now Agnes was a smith of old who deeply knew the elven lore
And long she laboured through the nights till Cellophane she crying bore.
A golden ring was Cellophane, and deep within its heart there shone
A light the world had never known to go where none had ever gone.

By secret runner went the ring from Agnes to her sister's need
But hardly had the ring arrived when Agnes' womb began to bleed.
In silence then she bore her pain as earthly death drew nigh her;
A note she left, then from its home her soul flew gently higher.

Before she died she bade her friends: "Make secret of my passing,
And when my sister bids me come please tell her naught distressing;
But keep this note until the day that peace again is planted
And if need be say Agnes' soul is gone to realms enchanted."

So joyfully did Morwen sing with Cellophane upon her hand
That love and beauty did she bring to all the people in her land.
Such magic spread the golden ring and so enchanting did she seem
That Manalom, the Elven king, took Morwen Darling for his queen.

‘Twas rare of old for man to break his heart and let his love wound
Be cleansed and healed by woman and with this plight troth his weremound.
Thus Morwen bearing Cellophane gained power to rule the hearthkin,
With Manalom, her wife and king, they'd heal the sickly earthspin.

She husbanded her people well and long through years of beauty
And Man'lom well his queen did serve with pleasure as his duty.
Together they brought happiness and peace throughout the kinhearths;
Where strife and meanness dwelt before now love grew full within hearts.

The children once again grew strong on myth and tale and laughter
And boy and girl no difference knew in thought or heart or crafter.
To each new life they paid respect, to each uniqueness tended
That every gift find room to grow that Earth's dark age be mended.


When peace and plenty'd filled the land and Morwen's heart grew weary
She bade farewell to Man'lom and the ring that she loved dearly.
Thus passed the rule from Morwen's hand as home again she journeyed,
To Darling Vale, her hearthkin land, to Agnes Morwen hurried.

The note from Agnes Morwen read and understood it wholly
That from the blood and pain of love could rise true beauty solely.
Then tears of joy for Agnes fell as Morwen drew love nigh her
That soon she'd join her sister there with peace around their bier.

Oh amulets of silver and of amethyst we wear
As long the years of wisdom from the mothers do we bear:
‘Twas long ago when Morwen sat beside the Elven king
That Agnes of the Darlings made for her a golden ring.

Falcon o’Hara, Winnipeg 1987