Freyja Incarnate

What can I offer her? A home. The simple comforts that come with four walls and a sprawling garden surrounded by land begging to be cultivated. Soft smiles as constant as the morning sun, and a passion that warms as gently and completely as the last coals of a dying day. Bits of wit salvaged from the works of a thousand authors, and the rock-solid patience and dependability of weathered stone. I am but one man, a simple man, a firm-souled homebody with simple tastes, simple desires.

But these things are not for her, they don’t hold any appeal for her warrior soul. Joy for her is the next adventure, the next thrill. She finds happiness amid the booted feet and broken glass at the bottom of a beer soaked moshpit. She revels in the flying sweat, the blood, the thrashing, pounding beat, and the adrenaline that comes with every split lip and battle bruise. She screams into the wind and the rain, runs blind into the whipping, rocky darkness, abandoning both shield and spear and emerging from every vicious skirmish wanting more, grinning at the feeling it gives her, at the feeling that tells her she is alive.

Every morning when I awake, I greet the sun with a silent smile that says I too am alive. When I rise and begin my day, when I sit down to write or immerse myself in the world of the mind, I know I am alive. I run into the depths of my own creativity and struggle not to emerge, always wanting more, always trying to take each idea one step further and follow it to its final destination. I put pen to paper or thrust my hands into the soil and revel in the creative process. My greatest thrills come from within, blossom into the forms of sudden inspiration, planning, creating, in building something new and wonderful with my hands. I find happiness in the leaves of a book, joy in the petals of a rose. I struggle and fight and battle against the tides of life just to spend one more moment at home, lost in my own internal pursuits, but she...

She flies away from the homes she knows like an unbreakable falcon. She seizes fate and danger in her talons and rockets recklessly skyward, each time reaching higher, straining toward the stars with open-mouthed grins.

I am the falcon that never strays far from the falconer. The great unknown is, for me, a place more fun to watch and experience through the tales of others than to ride out on the wavefront of a whirlwind tour of fire and thrashmetal. My flights of fancy are all taken within the confines of my mind. When I look at the distant horizon, I see the beauty of the mountains, the way their peaks are clothed in snow. I see the many colors of the endless sky and I smile, knowing I could never name them all. But for her, the horizon is a goal, a new adventure, a new reality to thrust herself into and conquer, to live within for a time and explore every crevice of. She looks at the sky and sees only the distance, the next frontier, the next challenge.

She is a warrior, and I am a poet. She is more at home lashed to the prow of a pirate vessel as it plows headlong through stormy seas, and I am more at home among my books and the dusty old authors who write them. I spin verses, I study, and I fight to become a better writer, a better teacher. She runs free, leaps from the sky and drags the heat of battle to the field before her like a flapping crimson herald. She runs screaming into the fray, leads every assault like a veteran valkyrie come to life straight from the eddas of old. She fights to fly in that new frontier, claws her way forward and hurls herself into each greater challenge, always running to the front lines wherever the struggle is hottest and the battle is most pitched against her.

If Óttar, a man once as simple as I, could rise to take his earthly crown and catch the favor of a goddess as beautiful and loving as Freyja, then maybe I too could find the path to the giantess who will tell me of my pedigree. Maybe I too can catch the eye of a goddess, this one goddess, this fearless berserker who is surely the chief among valkyries, this untamable Freyja incarnate. Maybe I can be the golden-bristled battle boar that carries her, not as a weight to snare or capture her, but as the one reliable constant in her ever changing life, the sole devotee to her mortal tradition and keeper of her sacred temple, the immovable rock which waits for her, always there to shelter her against the waves.

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