Glaer í Perinhwen: Lonan Eressëa

-Elfriend & Laiquendi

The Lay of Perinhwen: Path to Eressëa


In times of old, in stories told, there was a young elf named Dan.
He was a man, a sailor to hand, a builder of such majestic boats.
His ship was to float, built from ostrich to goat, from here to the deep blue sea.
For the place that he sought, for all that he fought, was hidden from all to find
Removed from the world, no longer he held, the way to the fair land beyond
So he gathered his wood, solid like it should, and set sail right there and then.

His care crafted it, high in the draft and carved with fanciful flair
Risked he upon sea from quay at day's end with faith it was enough
But it was rough, and cruel storms split the forms with a fracture,
While gloom how it loomed through the depths of the deep,
Thick like dreams when you sleep, cold as doom.
The stars where they gleamed only seemed to be farther,
When seen through the screening foam of the treacherous sea.

Adrift on a tree, all floating at sea, Dan muttered something quite strange
Oh woe be the waves that crash and behave, like rascals of rogue attire
For a sailor I am, and tailor in tan, and have made a sail on pyre
So afloat in a boat, made of goatskin coat, Dan flailed and splashed a mire
Come wither the sun! Come hither the fun! Shine bright the starlight above!
In midnight I fly, and paddle I try, to steer by the spry northern lights
To home I do bob, though my arms do a-throb, to my heart and one true love!

With the lights from above setting course by the force of desire,
Afire for love won once, but long days ago departed,
He would pay the cost and fight, though the mast was long lost,
Paddled he through the night and vast uncharted sea,
He started to sing of the falling, and cast longing from heart bereft,
For love that left over-sea, for his finding awaits his roaming,
Hastened he and his song did straddle worlds to elvenhome calling.

Far from the sea, in the land of the tree, roams the maiden of the half-filled heart.
With long golden hair, flowing from here to there, she waits for recompense.
Love lost in the last, time broken like his mast, her heart a bitter symphony
Of music that was wrought, in blood that was fought, and hatred deep in jealousy.
Two kindreds of the light, two lovers reunite, in hope without a body
The distance lays between, a shimmer that may gleam, of waves and rocks so dark
The road no longer straight, a love that cannot wait, calling like a sorrow-filled lark.

For once in old Beleriand, besides the golden sand, a sailor met his match
In time of war, when wounds were raw, two Elves feel deep in love
Yet it was not to be, for she you see, was betrothed to a noble warrior
Her royal bloodline to be secured, the warrior to her lured, against the sailor’s heart
A fight of love, from fate above, as the sailor’s kin did bleed
And beauty she, to Gondolin flee, by the warrior’s heartless will
Until finally evil befell, with warrior’s last death yell, and fair maiden fled over the sea

Perinhwen, halved was she, fair also and gold of hair did hearken,
Through her misery marked, the rumour of her lover’s salve,
Poor humour fled, and tears she shed, for lonesome history, old.
Hope embarked, heart’s voyage sparked by mystery fair of distant song,
Though doubt was riddled deep in heart so long had they by sea been parted,
Bold she would keep the vigil strong that started when the world was young,
The song was sung and faith would cope if singer home would come.

On seas of silver, in pale moon's slither, all lost amid the foam,
Dan bobbed and he weaved, awash as he grieved, to never see his love again.
But then he a-spied, though worn out and cried, something far worse that his fate
Not far behind him, in waters quite dim, a dark mass approach him in pain.
A monster he feared, and further he peered, ‘til dark mass arrived none to late
With razor-sharp teeth, like some hunk of beef, the monster rose up from the deep
For fate was cruel, embittered in duel, and darkness swallowed him whole.

Dan's song of love gone still and silent so did Perinhwen will voice aloft,
Strong it was though as petals soft to float above the sea strident,
And long she sang without relent to bolster Dan and call him home.
The storm of gloom rang shrill unspent yet he unbent and strove anew,
For though no note of song won through his heart with ears were lent,
The long years spent apart to end, he hove to in the surrounding dark,
And Mandos blew his art to set love free to she who waits - to Eressëa.

The ears of elves are keen they say, from far away came Perinhwen’s song,
And tears she shed swept out to sea with fears of beast and storm she wept,
By chance or love’s decree twixt Dan and she to know and see and hear,
The gift bestowed by fey fate that looming death would stay.
Delving deep in watery gloom love’s song lent to lift Dan toward breath,
But spent from trials of water and fear lured him toward sleep instead,
The breath to be his last he gasped to grieve his love should see him dead.

In anticipation of certain death, Perinhwen falls bereft, her lover lost forever
With the power of Eärendil, before Mandos she does kneel, to strike a deadly pact
Her strength borne of hopelessness, her fury deep in heartlessness, she wills a deadly act
Now determination rises fast, and with a mighty Elven blast, splits the seas asunder
Betraying all the sacred rites, standing atop holy heights, she carves a narrow path
For though world was bent, to her true love sent, a single straightening path
To call him back, though the final crack, to the light of hallowed hearth

So great the love of Perinhwen! So dire the fate she chose!
For those whose wroth she did arouse her fate would set, the fate of anger’s fire,
The Valar wove a shrouding cloth and did espouse a punishment cruel,
Decree of death and blinded sight did rule and separate love from its own mate,
With crowns of might and power fierce they crafted cloud and darkened sea,
And by their art set the mire no light could pierce, a veil twixt Dan and Perinhwen,
Ever more apart and pale the hope come late that withers hearts returning never.

In sight of light, in hallowed beauty bright, Dan glimpsed the forbidden land
Yet just as a quick, as if some trick, Perinhwen was suddenly gone
Dan raised at last, his haunted past, and swore to Mandos his oath,
That if fate indeed, would come in need, to help a sailor in love,
To spare her life, to end the strife, if he would stay beyond,
Where forever he would, for all things of good, protect the unbending splinter
The new path straight and true, from me to you, to Eressëa beyond the sea.

Free from anger, passion spent, the Valar hearkened to this noble plea,
Moved to pity they deigned relent and sent Dan to prove, his debt to pay,
Back to forgotten quay where quest began, and tied to land not his home.
Upon him heavily duty lay to see his brethren safe away ‘til all return to Eressëa,
And beyond the sea, his heart would linger ever patiently ‘til end of days,
When last ship crafted by his art a course he charts to bear his faith away,
The forfeit paid in lonely years then love delayed shall draw him homeward again.

Perinhwen awaits her beau, love lost long ago, in the undying lands of light
Dan toils beyond, his heart in a bond, on the shores of the havens of grey
Tall ships he will make, for her life’s sake, and guide the last Elves home
‘Till she’s in his hands, their tears on the sands, the debt repaid in kind
But for now he must wait, no love can he sate, between darkness and the light
And destiny brings, as the minstrels will sing, of the hearts that won’t ail
Of love that won’t fail, in the tragic tale, of Círdan and beloved Perinhwen.