Part 2: Agnetha, Child of Mist

“Pity,” Pierre Purvis de Chavannes, 1887, WikiArt.

Lo! Double-sided curse, twin sister Agnetha,
Name spoken not aloud, her curse, descending
Mist, freezing cloud, horrors of this tale.
Pale child, skin ice-cold on hottest summer
Days, wizened womb, milkless breasts, vile-
Tongue voices she discerned, hailstones
Pummeling, farming valleys destroyed,
Agnetha beckoned not curses cold, she was
Freezing death personified, lakes, streams
Turned ice-solid by single glance.

Torment upon Celtic lands, tribe migration
Forced, peace amongst warring clans, into
Salt-carving caves, clan-elders searched
Bones, rock etchings, curse ending rituals.
There upon torch-burnt stone, cold-killing
Riddles found, bitter bargains, sacrifice of
Chaste chalice, raining arrows screaming,
Clouds overhead rotating, tendrils ground-
Razing, legs and arms scattered, bloody mist
Into clouds swirling, perpetual frozen days.

Lo! Twin sisters, Athona and Agnetha, were
Driven from Celtic lands, here sagas diverge,
In truth, none know accounts true. Ritual of
Riddles relates shield fires, sword at throat
Thrusted, ice-frozen ages, falling, land-bridges
Emerging, evil sisters vanquished by blade of
Iron not of bronze. Round night fires, some
Claim sisters were captured in salt-bearing
Caves, lives lost in their dismemberment,
Searing flames, warriors frost-smitten.

“Pilgrims in the Snow,” Albert Bloch, 1925, WikiArt.

Thus, fighting, clawing by torchlight ensued,
Cave walls collapsing, no escape for noble
Warriors or for sisters twain. They fought
In choking-dust darkness. O! Black night
Of death! Screams beyond avalanche of
Stone. Decision made, tomb forever sealed,
Celtic heroes lost, cries of grieving kin,
Such price paid in flesh and bone. Saga
Ended at it began, “Child of flame, child
Of mist, Celtic twins, Athona and Agnetha.”

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