Tag Archives: Tom Murphy

Alfheim: Movement and Light 2/4 The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

10 Jul

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 19 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

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Alfheim

(the realm of the Elves)

Featuring:

Tom Murphy and Eleanor Perry

 

Alfheim

by Tom Murphy

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inside the fence
I know you as I walk towards me
seeing everything through your eye
I see it on my face
as you step into the firelight
we smile the same smile
as you look at me
and see the toll you’ve still to pay
you see the sons we will sire
the daughter we lost
the eye you have yet to lose

in my pocket
I have the apple I will offer you
before you offer yourself
the ninth knot

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washrag nouns

by Eleanor Perry

Snipped washrag

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Find out more about Tom and Eleanor here:

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

 

Eleanor Perry

https://twitter.com/nellperry

 

As always, thank you for your interest.

 

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Midgard: Survival and Destruction 3/4 The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

24 Jun

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 19 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

.

Midgard

(the realm of the people)

Featuring:

Nat Hall, Tom Murphy and Joanna Lee

 

Tun & Scattald

by Nat Hall

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Garth,
fae da Old Norse,
an arrangement of long houses with 
smoky stacks,
where farmers grind their
daily grain,
man’s wheel of life around
fire, sun and
seasons,
Voar-Simmer-Hairst [1]
to tame the land,
plant-grow-harvest
before black
leanness
of
winter. 
Around
this lush realm for mortals,
they build their ting [2]
and chamber 
cairns, [3]
harvest from the sea & the land –
scrutinise waves & horizon from
basalt edges of
old rocks,
share
their home with
wandering dead in between
stars & Northern lights.
On either side of
dry stone wall,
tun and scattald [4]
feel a safe 
world:
a
place to be born & to die,
raise your offspring with each harvest,
write your story on
every stone –
that perfect realm
you can call
“home”.

© Nat Hall 2015

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Notes:
[1] voar-simmer-hairst: [Shetland dialect] spring-summer-autumn
[2] ting: Viking field of parliament 
[3] chamber cairn: old funeral chamber 
[4] tun & scattald: the inner & outer side of an enclosed human settlement, traditionally with a stone wall.

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Midgard

by Tom Murphy

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ripe garden
shallow pool
wet grass
branch
root
peach
plum

sweet nectar dripping on the floor

as the straps tighten
as the moan escapes
as if uttered by someone else

into the melt
the cotton sticks to your back
soft and slubbed
under her fingers

 

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The realm of men

by Joanna Lee

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They laid the body of the firstborn
into the void of the Universe:
his flesh became land;
his blood, oceans;
his bones, mountains;
his hair, trees.

His skull they held still:
the four points
of the compass, empty.
They shook out his brains
and flung them wide to become
the cottony stuff of clouds.

Perhaps this is why
we, shaped from the dead
hewn hunks of elm and ash,
our home girded by the eyebrows
of giants, hold
such preoccupation

with our own skins.
A world encircled
by a serpent has no need
for creation myths
of temptation and flood,
no; we pluck at our bodies,

pick at imperfections,
dream of shedding
and of rainbow bridges; cut
ourselves, re-shape our-
selves, mold, curb, color, smoothe,
tug, press, hack, squeeze

out our skulls and fling
our brains over the edge
of believability, looking only
to look in the mirror
with satisfaction, looking
only to live forever.

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Find out more about Nat, Tom and Joanna here:

Nat Hall

nordicblackbird.weebly.com

https://twitter.com/nordicblackbird

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

Joanna Lee

the-tenth-muse.com

https://twitter.com/la_poetessa

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As always, thank you for your interest.

 

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Muspelheim: Sparks and Flames 1/4 The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

13 May

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 23 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

.

 Muspelheim

(the realm of fire)

Featuring:

Lenka Monk, Tom Murphy

and Rebecca Audra Smith

 

 

Flammable

by Lenka Monk

Inspired by story of Surt and Sinmara

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……Everything is ablaze
with you in my realm.
Even the stars seared themselves into the black vast canvas above.
They can never go out. Not while your afterglow ignites
the very last inch of me.
My Twin flame you have become.
I am a firefly, drawn to your inferno
in an eternity of firestorms.
Our power combined, forged by the fiercest heat
inside a furnace consumed and spent on all levels.
The embers aglow.
You are my beacon to guide me
through darkness.
You are my lighthouse inside a storm’s eye.
I burn in you.
I burn with you,
while everything around us still smoulders…..

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Part 7

Muspelheim

by Tom Murphy

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there is this thing like a memory
a bridge between the living and the dead
between past and future

this thing is in the grove
this thing is in us
a bond even when we’re apart

it is a thick iron chain
it is a thin filament of web
it is a bridge of ice
melting in the fire
it is a waterfall
very high
and very thin

this beam of sun and moon
shining from the eyes
holds the gaze
holds everything in it’s lattice

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Baltimore Fires

by Rebecca Audra Smith

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the stars slip out of the way to show the unending tale
of what is done in their names, it’s Baltimore
Rocks thrown by men thrown by children thrown by police
Arson is their attempt to lick the sky with flame
Headlines tomorrow read, Michael Brown, Freddie Gray

In the midst of all that noise
Comes the sense the fight’s still hot, quell the flames
They cut the hose, when the store started burning
the protestors for peace, held up their hands, said don’t shoot,
but still sons are being shot, mother slaps her boy hard,
you’re not Freddie Gray, Walter Scott

earth swallows the sun, the flames are burning fire,
vapour and rage have made the air both crisp and dry
you don’t want to be famous, known for the hands by which you died
someone says it like a litany, Walter Scott, Eric Garner

I heard strange fruits being sung upon these police lined streets
As she spoke of her neighbours death, body swinging, heavy tree
Your name is a future hashtag when you were born dark skinned
In the midst of all this noise it seems no one has had their say
Protestors hold their signs up, Michael Brown, Freddie Gray.

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Find out more about Lenka, Tom and Rebecca here:

Lenka Monk

Contact ArtiPeeps

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

Rebecca Audra Smith

https://twitter.com/BeccaAudra

beccaaudra.wordpress.com

 

 

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As always, thank you for your interest.

 

The Nine Realms Indiegogo Campaign:

http://igg.me/at/the9realms

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Helheim: ‘Death & Hollows’ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

23 Apr

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 23 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Helheim (The Realm through which men must pass to reach Nifelheim)

Featuring:

Eleanor Perry, James Knight and Tom Murphy

 

6.

whip shrug figurations

by Eleanor Perry

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we dig grisly at the slagheap ridge | where stark
proteins broke in the ash | there are high-voltage
moths and tumours in the masonry | brash ga-ga-
ganglia lolling in twists and graphs | and that tweed
squirm in the kitchen, darting and novelizing, all
sleaze and gravel shudder | we need to wake up
next to the aluminium industry | pull hungry and
hip reckless | our hardboard tetrahedral gods –
bright and shining with their clerical safeguards |
this is rock-n-surf | there are no other meat splinters
in the fissuring hour of the liver | and I have put the
whole galaxy into spilth and multicode | these back-
lands full of weird mimiviruses frothing in the gaps |
high-balling in the green of telemarketing | where I
quietly slang viridians

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Hel

by James Knight

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Switch on
Switch off

Silvered faces
Inside the mirror

Do come in
Make yourself at home

WTF! I can’t see a thing
Only my face
I look like a fucking weirdo
What’s going on with my eyes?

Switch on
Switch off

Fold yourself up, put yourself in my hand
Wait

Switch on
Switch off

It’s simply not true to claim that we’re the party of privilege
We stand for honest, decent, hard-working

Switch on
Switch off

Drive more website traffic
In fact, our data shows that using a
Drives 43% more engagement

Silvered faces
At home

My eyes

Put yourself in my hand

Switch on
Switch off
Switch on
Switch

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Part 6

Helheim

by Tom Murphy

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the creepy motherfucker never unchancy
reeled and hollered
as I removed the breath from his throat

snow crunched and swirled
I crunched and swirled
he grew cooler

there was a boast
an insult or two
breaths he should have kept to himself

blood was spilled of course
coursing unbound
feezing on the ground

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Find out more about Eleanor, James and Tom here:

Eleanor Perry

https://twitter.com/nellperry

James Knight

thebirdking.com

https://twitter.com/badbadpoet

 Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

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As always, thank you for your interest.

 

The Nine Realms Indiegogo Campaign:

http://igg.me/at/the9realms

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Nifelheim: ‘Spaces and Pain 1/4’ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

26 Mar

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 22 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Nifelheim (The Realm of the Dead

Featuring:

Jim C Mackintosh, Eleanor Perry

and Tom Murphy

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The Signal Keeps Breaking

by Jim C. Mackintosh

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I am trying to phone you from
the most hellish place there’s ever been
with the worst phone signal ever.

It has taken nine days to get here
but all the things I gave up to get here
will not buy me a fare for the nine days back.

There are so many things wrong
with this place, I am not sure what
to describe, or whether I should even try.

I will try texting you, that way, you will
have a record of this vile land but
it is no land I have dreamt of

or woken in the cold sweat of night
fearing my destiny. And should I not
return, I pray you will read my words.

There are so many people, dead people
some dying, or not but still wandering
stumbling in the sludge of putrid pools

pools that lap the edge of a cauldron
its crusted rim catching the unaware
pulling them into a depth I can only fear.

I tried to save an old man, grabbing his coat
but he was beyond the depths my shallow
cowardice would allow me to wade.

There is no sun, yet there is light enough
to pick out the pain, the shadows of scars
and marks across the strands of shore

where the keel marks of the dead, dragged
by their souls, lead to a dragon’s bowl
nestled on the bleach of suppers past.

There is no time, but there is order
in this terrible chaos. Despite the mists
that catch your throat like heated flints

tossed into the air by the sadness
of children, seemingly lost, wandering
with their blankets of belongings.

I have tried speaking to them but
they stare through me except one
attracted by the light of the phone

grabbed at it but when I pushed him
away, he dissolved into a puddle
leaving only rags and a scatter of baubles.

The other children, at least I imagine
them to be children, did nothing but pick up
the dissolved one’s rags and walk away

towards the dark mass of a tower,
ice-cold like a frozen heart, an island
of infinity drawing me towards its gate.

Down an impossible path, beaten
like a flattened vein, exhausted
under the burden of its purpose.

I can’t see beyond the gate but
I must go beyond the daubed sign ‘Hel’
I must not falter in my step, my courage.

Through the briar, and soft ash
of unspoken voices caught, discarded
in the unsettled mounds by the path

to an uncertain fate. I am weak yet
my resolve is strong, to face the dark
beyond the buttressed edge of Hel.

I will leave these words, this dying
signal with a child, to keep safe
from the poisoned mists that force me –

the signal keeps breaking –

I am entering Hel, alone –

breaking –

me

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5.
whorf hypothesis

insect noon, and this, the wishing element | we softly
saw ruin | the other wolf moon in the mouth | and it
seemed a lot of hurt | star meat sunk deep in neon sock-
ets | spoon-tapped atoms like those sea lilies which
drag themselves | in polished glass | since water is a
human learning | and the road hums so thick | we
would lung this tired space | even in obscene echoes |
and the words went light like bones | blue robot vague.

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Part 5

Nifelheim

by Tom Murphy

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galloping up the hill

knuckles knotted in the mane

Draumur leaping through the waves of grass

as if surging through salt foam sea

each of these a spell

a telling of path

the three moments

embracing under the waterfall

sitting in the dark cave of mist

floating on the milk blue pond

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the idea of north

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You can read the overview of Nifelheim  here , and see some Nidavellir poems here

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Find out more about Jim, Eleanor and Tom here:

Jim C. Mackintosh

bigbaffy.com

https://twitter.com/JimCMackintosh

Eleanor Perry

 https://twitter.com/nellperry

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

 

As always, thank you for your interest.

.

Vikings Ahoy! The Nine Realms Update: March

5 Mar

 

nine realms8

19 poets, 22 artists, 3 musicians and a Viking boat

Vikings Ahoy!

Funding

I finally sent off our application to Arts Council England (ACE) last week, which was a great relief after 2 months of fiddling with words and figures.  You become so anxious about wanting to communicate the worth of your project and the quality of the creatives involved, and hoping you’ve done everything and everyone justice…. I’m pleased to say that the day before yesterday I heard that the application had passed through the first stage, which feels great. I shall keep everyone posted as to the application’s progress. We will hear in the middle of April.

It’s funny how life works: that on the same morning that I pressed the submit button to whiz the application off to ACE, I also heard from Norfolk County Council, saying that we have been offered a provisional grant from them- towards the cost of hiring ‘The Gallery’ space in Hanse House. This feels brilliant because it reconfirms that the Council thinks highly of the creatives involved, the projects we create, and the opportunities we offer. And in terms of Norfolk, it’s great that they are supporting Hanse House in its development as a cultural venue. So good news all round!

I have also finally sent off two trust letters to The Paul Bassham Trust (supporting events in Norfolk) and the Laura Elizabeth Stuart Memorial Trust (who support projects in Norfolk with a broad educational remit) for help towards the hire of Hanse House and our Schools’ Day costs on the Friday of our event. Decision dates on trust funding can be quite quick. The trusts meet in April, and we can  hear 2-3 weeks later,  so watch this space….

Crowdfunding

With the trust letters off I can now concentrate on preparations for our crowdfunding campaign. We have decided to go for Indiegogo this time because it has a firm not-for-profit remit and flexible funding. It’s a difficult call to make- Kickstarter or Indiegogo, but the only way to know is to have an experience of both.  So this year its Indiegogo’s turn…..At the moment I am aiming to begin our campaign on Monday 20th April for 30 days.  Last year we crowdfunded for entire project costs. This year we are funding for the commission fees of our oak-carved Viking boat, which will be live carved by woodcarver Mark Crowley across the 30 days. Live updates throughout. The boat will act as a focal point in ‘The Gallery’ space throughout our event. We are going to be donating the boat to Hanse House after the 5-days, so it can sit within a suitable hanseatic setting. We’ll have to nab the boat back though when we tour with The Nine Realms…..

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The month ahead will consist of me pulling the campaign together on Indiegogo and creating a project video and campaign page. I’m having a different approach this year with the video, and making it a lot less talky and more image based, which I think will work much better. I’m also planning to storyboard it carefully first as well. We are also presently confirming the backer rewards, and I’ll reveal all as soon as they’re 100% decided upon.

Other Progress:

Two pieces of artwork for the project have come in thus far. I will share them with the Viking participants first, and then post them out in my next update. All the artwork is due in on Thursday 30th April which will be in the middle of our campaign.  I think it will be exciting to reveal all the event art in the middle of our funding initiative.

 As some of the artwork has already come in I have been able to start creating the first greetings card in  our reward 3-pack.  The artwork and writing features Viking artist Robert Fitzmaurice and Viking poet Tom Murphy . The card went off yesterday to the printers, and as soon as it is ready, I’ll release it to the world. 

I think that’s about it for now.

Thank you, as ever, for your interest.

Viking Nicky

The Nine Realms HQ

Nidavellir: ‘ Darkness and Gold’ 2/4′ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

4 Mar

nine realms8

The Nine Realms

9 months, 19 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 musicians, 1 Viking boat : a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Nidavellir (The Realm of the Dwarves)

Featuring:

Tom Murphy, Shirley Golden and Jim C. Mackintosh

 

Part 4

Niðavellir

by Tom Murphy

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the times when it’s darkest
bear the most precious things
they shine
wrought from stones
and jewels
and rarer minerals
each design unique
each with qualities, refined

guard them
don’t let them fade
reflect on them often
in case they’re forgot

 

MP3 to come

 

The Smile of Gold and Dust

by Shirley Golden

 

The first ray hits and he comprehends. It scatters the rich expressions that intoxicated and clouded his judgment. His skin, tightens, blackens and starts to flake like ash. Pain screams through skin and vein but Alvis can’t help smile at his opponent, even as his limbs crumble to dust. Cheshire-cat-like, it is the smile that remains when all else has collapsed.

It’s difficult to see what this clever, gold minor could find so amusing at such a moment. You’d need to be as wise as a dwarf, or as all-knowing as a god. Or possess a time machine and travel back to hear the words Alvis crowed as he strutted into Thor’s hall and demanded the hand of his daughter.

‘…there’s nothing I do not know…’ Perhaps it was that. Or, ‘…I don’t mean to hang around here any longer than I have to.’ But that must have stung a tad. Could such a remark really be the source of his amusement?

How did Thor start each question? Ah, yes, that was it: ‘Tell me, Alvis! You’re the dwarf who knows everything about our fates and fortunes…’

Turns out he couldn’t guess at his own.

It’d be easy to suppose that Thor delayed Alvis with his strength or even with a trick. But Alvis understands exactly why he stayed and time passed without his knowing. He can feel the rhythms and the pauses, heartbeat and breath. He can sense the rise and fall of meanings, pulsing through his veins like a rush of blood to the head. And there’s the beauty of piecing it all together, and how it bound him, tighter than Fenrir’s binding. And how he was compelled to reply and sustain the narrative that spun its potent mix of lyrical knowledge. Because Thor, with all his command, could not have held him captive until the sun broke through the dripping hall.

So, yes, he smiles because the god of thunder will boast of this victory for aeons to come. But Alvis knows it was not a god’s might that undone him.

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The Mock of Alvis

by Jim C. Mackintosh

What sort of man are you? Your pallor
Of death’s disregard, your slumbered
Bend lifted from the mortal slab of Gods.

You creep from the depths below
The growing one’s burdened weight.

Your shoulders soaked under
The vaulted ceiling of the dripping hall.

You dare to follow the shiner
To seek my unbound promise.

You shun Dvalin’s Deluder,
Its nibbled edge at your grubby heels.

You seek the folded comfort of the concealing helmet
To stand before Thor with the trickery of your wisdom.

Your fear, I sense, pushed on stormer’s edge
Whipped by Mjollnir’s Thunder will set you.

You dare to stir the essence of day
With your vain plans of matrimony.

You defy the endless depths of oceans
To drown me with your words.

You will suffer the lick of the hurrier
Catching your eyes, boiling your brains.

You betray the kinship of the dream goddess
To uncork your bottled, hopeless greed.

You should quaff your mead slowly, All-Wise
The last amber beads picked out in the sun.

You will crack and groan and stiffen.
I will laugh and mock and listen –

As your pale bones gather moss,
Your wisdom spent.
The sea of words will score
its drag marks
across you forever.

All the fates of men
Know this to be true.

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This poem is based on the Lay of Alvis in which the dwarf Alvis (All-Wise) engages with Thor in a wisdom contest to claim what he feels is his right, the hand of Thor’s daughter, Thrud in marriage. This is my interpretation of Thor’s response at the end of the fated challenge.

Thor is deliberately mocking Alvis by using the Dwarf phrases that Alvis would know –

The Growing One is Earth
The Dripping Hall is Sky
The Hastener is the Moon
Dvalin’s Deluder* is the Sun
The Concealing Helmet are the Clouds
The Stormer is the Wind
The Deep Ocean* is the Sea
The Hurrier is Fire
The Dream Goddess is Night
The Mead is Ale, Beer

*Dvalin was a dwarf who suffered the same fate overtaking Alvis.
*also referred to as Lagasta

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 You can read the overview of Nidavellir hereand read some Vanaheim poems here

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Find out more about Tom, Shirley and Jim:

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

Shirley Golden

shirleygolden.net

https://twitter.com/shirl1001

Jim C. Mackintosh

bigbaffy.com

https://twitter.com/JimCMackintosh

 

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As always, thank you for your interest.

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Jotunheim: ‘ Strength & Might’ 1/3′ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

29 Jan

World Tree Norse

The Nine Realms

9 months, 22 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Jotunheim

Featuring:

Tom Murphy, Joanna Lee and Shirley Golden

 

Jotunheim

by Tom Murphy

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when he was with her
she made him feel small

in her words were a spell
a glamour of careful construction
leaving him like a stone on a mountain
like a drop of mead in a barrel
so small he didn’t exist

he preferred to be himself
three days was all he could take

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Today

by Joanna Lee

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your dragon purrs, earth-
quaking, scaly metaphor
made heavy flesh, a serpent

that circles your world. you,
its catspaw to bat and squeeze
and toss gray skyward

where you seek snow
to pillow the hard gorge of falling,
or a hero, a hammer-wielding

savior to break the cage of winter.
lift a cup with me, drain the ocean
of ache and illusion. every season

has its ending, every Goliath
its David, every snake its eagle.

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Today plays with the language of a story wherein Thor and his companions are tricked by the illusory magic giant Loki. Among other things, Thor is challenged to pick up a grey cat but can only lift a paw; it is revealed later that the cat is actually Jormundgand, the serpant that encircles the world. The story is in The Poetic Edda.

 

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The Other Female

by Shirley Golden

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She’s just a woman, the men said. But she wasn’t; she was a giant, Gale Jup. And she guarded the gateway to Gerry’s office.

He recruited her for his protection services to stop us from barging in unannounced and disturbing him with trivia. He didn’t care to hear of the intricacies of debt collection. His only concern was that we bring back the goods or the dosh. He wasn’t interested in excuses, false promises or complaints.

There was no getting past Gale. He called her, ‘daughter’ but no one knew if it were true. She never referred to him as ‘father’. But she wasn’t the sort to admit her existence was contingent upon another. She dragged in her own desk, carved from rowan, bumping it up several flights of stairs. She filled reception with her booming voice and the scent of wild flowers, scattered in sentinel vases, balanced on surrounding cabinets.

She curbed the stream of petty hitches, held back the lawsuits and hid the details of hospitalisations. We took turns to try and get past her, to talk to the boss about pay and conditions but no one could get close. Until Roth turned up.

Roth’s credentials looked good on the page. But he had gained a reputation as a thug. Some said he had worked for Doni Fury (one of many names given to the mobster boss). Others said he still did.

Gerry believed Gale could deal with Roth, and that he’d be perfect for the tougher clients. Certainly, he knew his way around a threat and had a temper quick as a hammer strike, sparking on an anvil.

He settled in without a fuss until pay day. We were all familiar with Gerry’s habits. He never rewarded what he promised. Roth demanded to see Gerry, and the men gathered around the edges of reception, keen to see how this would play out; they hoped his objections might benefit them all.

Gale straddled her chair and used every feminine fibre of her being to distract him.
For three days, she was successful. We placed bets on how long it would take. Would today be the day he broke her backbone? I was the only one who bet against Roth.

Gale preoccupied him with a swing of her hips and the promise of a latte from the vending machine. But on the fourth day he held fast to her desk and refused to let go. She stopped giggling and whispering. She crossed her arms and ordered him to leave. He grabbed a vase and hurled it towards her head, but she ducked and it cracked the glass on Gerry’s office door. She straightened to her full height. She strode towards Roth, seized him by the scruff of the neck and frogmarched him down the stairs. The others looked on in disbelief. My small applause and cheer were lost in a sea of glares.

We never saw Roth again. No one tries to get past Gale anymore. Of course, when new boys arrive the others tell the tale of Roth and his now mythical status, how he burst into Gerry’s office like a wave, crushing her coastal defences.

I try to explain that wasn’t how things panned out at all, and how the tape across Gerry’s door represents Roth’s failure, not hers.

But they take no notice of me, the other female in the department.

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You can read the overview of Jotenheim  here , and read some Vanaheim poems here

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Find out more about Tom, Joanna and Shirley:

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

Joanna Lee

the-tenth-muse.com

https://twitter.com/la_poetessa

 Shirley Golden

https://twitter.com/shirl1001

shirleygolden.net

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As always, thank you for your interest.

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Vanaheim: ‘ Magic & Wonder’ 2/4′ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

5 Jan

World Tree Norse

The Nine Realms

9 months, 22 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Vanaheim

Featuring:

Richard Biddle, Shirley Golden, Eleanor Perry

and Tom Murphy

 

Mjölnir*

by Richard Biddle

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I’m Blackjack, the splintering demon
I’m Crumble-Crunch, the shattering spirit
I’m Master-Batterer, the god spike
I’m The Convincer

I’m Bludgeon, the thump engine
I’m Bear-Down, the clobber bomb
I’m Nightstick, the pulveriser
I’m The Divine Beater

I’m Conk-Buster, the thrash contraption
I’m Fragmentize, the king of knock
I’m Quarterstaff, the wallop machine
I’m The Creator-Of-Dust

I’m Lord Cudgel, the blunt
I’m Boomerang, the whomper
I’m Father Pummel, the bang shape
I’m The Almighty Contraption

I’m Billy Battle, the whack gadget
I’m Cosh, the form persuader
I’m Finish-The-Job, the power pestle
I’m The Appliance-Of-Pain

I’m Hickory Wallop, the trouncing baton
I’m Break-Up, the holy apparatus
I’m Crush, the truncheon of defeat
I’m The Deity Mace

I’m Smash Being, the hammerer of all
I’m Gizmo Hit, the machine of strike
I’m Pounding Device, the fashioner of atoms
I’m The Demigod of Battering-Rams

I’m Tap-Tap-Tap, the all-knowing utensil
I’m Murder Mallet, the totem of kill
I’m Head Swatter, the staff of non-compliance
I’m The Absolute Club

I’m Drive-It-Home, the homicidal implementing machine
I’m Whatchamacallit, the idol of heavy
I’m Prime Mover, the omnipotent weapon of means
I’m Total Annihilation

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*Mjölnir is usually interpreted as meaning “That which smashes”, derived from the verb mölva “To smash” (cognate with English meal, mill); comparable derivations from the same root meaning “hammer” are Slavic molot and Latin malleus (whence English mallet).

An alternative suggestion compares the name to Russian молния (molniya) and the Welsh word mellt, both words are taken as meaning “lightning”. This second theory would make Mjölnir the weapon of the storm god identified with lightning, as in the lightning-bolt or vajra in other Indo-European mythologies.[4]

In the Old Norse texts, Mjölnir is identified as hamarr “a hammer”, a word that in Old Norse and some modern Norwegian dialects can mean “hammer” as well as “stone, rock, cliff”, ultimately derived from an Indo-European word for “stone, stone tool”, h₂éḱmō; as such it is cognate with Sanskrit aśman, meaning “stone, rock, stone tool; hammer” as well as “thunderbolt”.[5]

Mjøl in modern Norwegian (nynorsk) literally means “flour” or “powder”, so “Mjølner” (Norwegian spelling) can mean “Pulverizer” or “Grinder”.

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The Music-Speak of Kvasir

by Shirley Golden

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Born of Aesir and Vanir’s mouth-juices and truces, I am fashioned into this bone-cage, but no clothes quite fit. I’m sought far and wide, and I close my eyes and bear all burdens. I ponder predicaments, but only ever suggest and guide. For who am I to command another the best track to tread?

 The dwarfs invite me to their feast, and I accept in good faith. I sit at their tables of hammered gold. They mutter and lead me away from the merriment. They stab at my chest and heart; they collect three flagons of battle-sweat. They seal snug my mind-insight and take care not to brag of their prize. They stir in honey and make mead, creamy with music-speak, and they are so pleased with their hidden hoard. But such covetous pleasure is only ever short lived.

Now the giant, Suttung, keeps me, and his daughter, Gunnod, guards me. But she is seduced by Odin, and surrenders her secret stash. The wish-giver draws me into his food-cavern. And we take to the skies, soaring as an eagle over the mountains, and on to Asgard. Odin dives behind the stone-shield, but in his haste, a piece of me is expelled. He distributes my remains into assembled crocks.

The gods, aware of the spillage, deem it unworthy of retrieval: ‘the bad poets’ portion’ has no place in their realm. They discount the droplets as easily as a sprig of mistletoe, newly unfurled. They do not fret over the fate of the waste; for who would be foolish enough to use only the ill-conceived, unconsidered parts? But I yearn to draw the leakage back to my liquid heart.

It spreads, and stains, drips and trickles, flows and floods. With each age, it slops unchecked as ink spilled over page, print and screen. It streams into the lungs of new technologies where it is read, absorbed, given questionable gravitas. It seeps into the ether as dashed out titbits of text, words freely uploaded, dregs and haste; speak best not saved. The parts best served for poets’ growth. The parts best kept on the other side of the wall.

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2.

slick theory

by Eleanor Perry

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wolfhusks mock the pines the
scaly parts ] scrape out their
grit and jewel ] and bleached
thread is all that the mineral
will sing tricks for ] still the
quotas of star and stone are
only known in metrics ] or in
shrines.

they calculate the skin ] more
wolves and axes ] needles: this,
the latest speculation in reeling
particles ] til song or something
shudders from the pile ] to print
the value of each question ] oh
but there was so much heart
though

in the margins ] clay blue shells
worn and crashed like rubble
] in a lottery of constellation ]
wow, just look at how the carbon
scares ] plucked shimmering
from the balance sheet ] the
rockery ] to still the heart ] but
then, the heart is awkward.

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MP3 to come

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Vanaheim

by Tom Murphy

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inside the fence
as I hang
I remember I am my own little ghost

there is the wound
stitched up for now

there is the flagstone
beneath which lies molten rock
thick and limitless and orange

then there is the small empty thing
formless and light
and when certain words are spoken
I cough it up
but it leaves behind its emptiness
and the emptiness is a tiny speck of infinite burden
containing time and all the feelings of lost
as a reminder

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You can read the overview of Vanaheim here , and see some Asgard poems here

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Find out more about Richard, Shirley, Eleanor and Tom:

Richard Biddle

writings43.blogspot.co.uk

https://twitter.com/littledeaths68

Shirley Golden

shirleygolden.net

https://twitter.com/shirl1001

Eleanor Perry

https://twitter.com/nellperry

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

 

As always, thank you for your interest.

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Asgard: ‘Warriors and Ravens 1/5’ The Nine Realms- Poems and Writing

13 Nov

World Tree Norse

The Nine Realms

9 months, 22 poets and writers, 22 Artists, 3 composers, 1 Viking boat: a magical reworking of Norse Mythology for contemporary audiences

 

Poems and Writing inspired by the Norse realm of Asgard

Featuring:

Tom Murphy, Joanna Lee, James Knight, Nat Hall

 

Asgard

by Tom Murphy

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on the first night I was called by the jackdaw
tapping on the sill after the moon went dark
“fly” she said, and I was able to follow
a cold night but I soared
over the meadow
into the wood
across the bridge

I saw bodies hanging in the tree
the nine lives offered
the snake
the wolf
the elk
the hare
the frog
the cat
the fox
the calf

by the fire
the old man sat
a circle already prepared
so deep was his look
he saw my birth
through my left eye

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All the world needs is another dumb princess

by Joanna Lee

 

Jpeg All the World by Joanna Lee

 

Click on the poem to enlarge. 

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To find out more about the back-story to this poem click here.

 

 Ymir

by James Knight

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Ymir used to be a big nothing;
Now he’s everything. 

His hair is the grass, the trees, the reeds
His scalp is the desert
His skull is the empty vault of space
His brain is telecommunications
His skin is a reality made of matter and mirages
His forehead is the Ten Commandments
His eyebrows are lethargy and a thousand easy lies
His eyelashes are the meshes of love
His eyes are stars, supernovas, lightbulbs, fireworks, napalm, nuclear war
His ears are the remains of imaginary animals 
His nose is a sad farewell
His nostrils are wormholes to another dimension where the Bird King reigns from his electric throne
His lips are a debate on the meaning of the word “jihad”
His teeth are Coca Cola
His tongue is mother of all languages 
His cheeks are zoology
His chin is Mount Olympus 
His neck is an execution at dawn
His shoulders are art installations attempting controversy through the juxtaposition of childhood and terrorism 
His arms are escape routes to Hell
His hands are bird cages or prison cells or holding bays or rooms without doors 
His chest is archaeology 
His ribcage is the phantom city at dusk
His heart is time
His lungs are the four winds, weather, disaster
His abdomen is sentiment
His digestive system is a labyrinth of corridors and offices 
His hips are cemeteries
His genitals are every whimsical thought anyone has ever had
His legs are mannequins staring murderously at passersby
His feet are oceans. 

The rest of Ymir remains uncatalogued
In boxes 
In a basement 
Under the ruins of a building
Forgotten by the story-tellers.

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Title Jpeg

(Superstition)

by Nat Hall

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Feel flight feathers & falcon’s skin.

Now walk through clouds, realm of Æsir,
where ravens perch on primal
strand of the rainbow;
where rain falls red
and Mjollnir *
sleeps –
he
who
wears blue
will not be seen as the shaman,
but a rider extraordinaire –
Huginn & Muninn**
side by side,
birds of
battle wish for
wisdom.
Rumour rambles
inside gods’ dreams, he
who controls the many moods of
heavens’ eyes, fruits of
the Earth and fights
giants, can be
called in the name of law,
farming men frown to his chariot…
Skygods in mighty citadel,
home inside halls, walls built by a tricked
gigantic mason,
there is a sly one among them –
he might just be a half-brother, metamorphic,
so fair of face, unafraid to turn a
stallion, hides black inside.
And if you doubt
superstition,
wait for the slain,
flames, ferryman – hear
valkyries*** run on
floorboards,
stand
on
other side of
the shore.

Now let gods gaze at the cauldron.

Let them drink tides of golden
mead brewed for them in
the sea god’s hall.
From his high
seat at
Valaskjalf*.
He, mighty seer, surveys it all in the nine realms.

© Nat Hall 2014

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1 * Mjollnir: Thor’s hammer;’** Huginn & Muninn: Odin’s ravens – Huginn (thought) & Muninn (Memory)
2 ***Valkyries: Odin’s twelve maidens who conducted the slain warriors of their choice from the battlefield to
Valhalla (Vikings’ paradise). Valaskjalf: Odin’s Hall

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You can read the overview of Asgard here

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Find out more about Tom, Joanna, James and Nat here:

Tom Murphy

https://twitter.com/sandcave

Joanna Lee

http://the-tenth-muse.com/

https://twitter.com/la_poetessa

James Knight

http://thebirdking.com/

http://chimeragroup.wordpress.com/

https://twitter.com/badbadpoet

Nat Hall

http://nordicblackbird.weebly.com/

https://twitter.com/nordicblackbird

 

Watch out for more Asgard poetry next week!

As always, thank you for your interest. 

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