Sea wolves

First we watched a league of longships
swarm along the river Deben
heard the beat of oar in rhythm
heard the slapping of the water
roar of Saxon froze the marrow
saw the white winged sails enfolded
like our homing birds at sunset

So began the raids and plunder
fights with iron fist and metal
slaughter for each other's kingdoms
in the evening then these Norse men
drank sweet mead that summons dreaming
gods of love and war and thunder
seas that lure and cast asunder
drifting to the realms of Wōden
sea wolves sailing up the Deben

©Laura Granby

Taking to the waters in Longfellow rhythm with the Real Toads 100 word prompt: Sailing.

20 thoughts on “Sea wolves

  1. It always gladdens me to see how one poem may give rise to another. You tell the tale very stirringly. History is so bound to the mastery of rivers and seas.

    1. know what you mean Kerry – its the lineage – akin to this one of our forefathers!

  2. Maybe it’s time to apologize for what my Norse forefathers might have done… I love how you saw that scene of those iron-fisted men coming up the river… terrible yet with a romantic flare.

    1. the Anglo Saxons made us what we are! always imagine them coming up this river when I visit a favourite spot in Suffolk where the renowned AS burial site was discovered here at Sutton Hoo

  3. What a great idea to write this in that rhythm – and it is actually quite reminiscent of old Anglo-Saxon verse.

    1. was prompted by the prompt Rosemary and fun to attempt that trochaic tetrameter 😛

  4. It’s like you’re channeling the buried king at Sutton Hoo … A dream of earth and gold and death. The circular narrative gives it the round of an old song on an old record player, buried deep in a cultural earth & still playing. Does our ache for wilderness include the braying of these sea wolves?

    1. yes we have become rather mundane methinks and yearn for a bit of wilderness too- I like your record playing history motif and clever critique

  5. Love this musicality and the specific images in history that this conjured up…save me a drop of that sweet mead so that I may dream, too, on the sea. Thanks for sharing!

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