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THE SWORD OF ANGANTYR.
-M. G. LEWIS.
The original is to be found in Hick’s Thesau. Ling. Septen,
I have taken great liberties with it, and the catastrophe is my own invention. Several versions of this Poem have already appeared, particularly one by Miss Seward,
Hervor bids thy slumbers fly!
Angantyr, reply! reply!
Reach me, warrior, from thy grave
Schwafurlama's magic blade;
By the dwarfs at midnight made.
Hervardur, obey my charms,
Hanri too, and Angantyr: Hither, clad in bloody arms,
Hafte with helmet, sword, and spear!
Haften, heroes, haften all;
Sadly pace the spell-bound fod; Dread my anger, hear my call,
Tremble at the charmer's rod!
Are the sons of Angrym's race,
They whose breasts with glory burn'd, All deprived of manhood's grace,
All to duft and ashes turn'd ?
Where the blasted yew-tree grows,
Where the bones of heroes lie, What, will none his grave unclose,
None to Hervor's voice reply?
Shades of warriors cold and dead,
Fear my wrath, nor longer stay! Mighty fouls to Hela fled,
Come! my powerful spells obey.
Either inftant to my hand
Give the fword of myfic power, Which the waf and fpectre-band
Büthed in blood at niidriglit hour;
Or, in Odin's hall of cheer,
Never shall ye more repose, Never more drink mead and beer
From the skulls of slaughter'd foes !
ANGANTYR. Hervor! Hervor! cease thy cries,
Nor oblige, by impious spell, Ghosts of slaughter'd chiefs to rise ;
Sport not with the laws of hell!
Know, nor friend's, nor parent's hand
Laid in earth's embrace my bones:
I the Tyrfing gave to these ;
'Twas but justice ; ?twas their due, Hervor! Hervor! rest in peace,
Angantyr has told thee true.
Dar'st thou still my anger brave?
Thus deceitful dar'lt thou speak? Sure as Odin dug thy grave,
Lies by thee the sword I feek.
I alone may call thee fire,
I alone thine heir can be ; Give me then the sword of fire,
Angantyr, oh! give it me!
It endures no female hand;
Who prefumes to touch the brand :
But from thee a son shall spring,
(So the Valkyries declare) Who shall reign a mighty king ;
He the magic blade shall wear.
HERVOR. Hela! Hela ! thrice around
This enchanted spot I pace: Hela! Hela! thrice the ground
Thus with myftic signs I trace.
While I swear by Odin's might,
Balder's locks, and Sculda's wing, By the god renown'd in fight,
By the rhymes the fifters fing,
Still the dead unrest shall know,
Still shall wave my magic rod, Still the shivering ghosts shall go
Round and round this spell-bouni fod,
Till the sword, the death of shields,
Shall my fire to me resign,
As in his grasp, fear'd in mine!
Can this impious zeal abate,
To dispute the will of Fate,
I no more retard thy doom :
Arm’d with magic helm and spear Seek the Tyrfing, seek my tomb,
When the midnight hour is near.
Stormy clouds around me lour!
All is silent, mortals sleep! 'Tis the folemn midnight hour!
Angantyr, thy promise keep.
'Tis the time, and here the grave :
Lo! the grate with pain I lift : Father, reach me forth the glaive,
Reach the dwarf's enchanted gift.
Know, beneath my head it lies,
Deep embrown'd with hostile gore. Hervor, daughter, cease thy cries,
Hervor, daughter, alk no more.
Flames curl round in many a spire,
Flames from Hilda's myitic hand ;