To the South was the burning land of Utgarðr,
Where no travellers could go, for all is aflame.
Sparks flew to the North, though not much farther,
For the cold nulled their might, luke-warm the air became.
To the North was Niflheimr, that misty place,
With rivers that ran venomously, and formed Rime in their path.
As it flowed further South, it melted at an alarming pace,
And, meeting the warmth, life was the glorious aftermath.
Ginnungagap, location of Mimisbrunnr, was mild and warm,
The poisonous Rime sprayed forth, and froze on the earth quite solidly.
Life emerged with fiery force, a Jötunn man took form,
His name was Ymir, and he did not live life stolidly.
From under the arms of the great Hrimþurs, sweat beget two,
Man and woman, one named Bestla, the other Mimir.
A curious happening also took place, for his feet beget too,
the foot-child had three heads, and the name of Þrúðgelmir.
With the dripping of Rime, Auðhumla came alive in due time,
She was the sacred Aurochs, and nourishing milk she gave to Ymir.
His thirst for her life equaled her desire for salty Rime,
As she licked ravenously, she caused the mighty Búri to appear.
A strong, lovely man, Búri drank deeply from Auðhumla, bringing forth a son,
Named Burr, the son took Bestla for his bride, and sired three mighty Goðin.
These three are the creators of Heaven and Earth, and servant to none,
One was named Vili-Lóðurr, another Vé-Hnir, and the eldest Óðinn.
In the hunger he had, Ymir killed Auðhumla, for which he was killed,
His copious blood drowning all of the Hrimþursar but one, named Bergelmir.
Out of his body, the Goðar made the world, all of him was used to build,
In-depth will this rhyme go, of the utilization of Ymir.
Lakes and the Sea were his blood, and his flesh the earth,
Mountain Cliffs from his bones, and his teeth made stones and gravel.
His hair became Trees and Plants, which is a strange rebirth,
His limbs became soil in the Grotti Mill, like injustice under a gavel.
Inland on the fertile world, Óðinn and his brothers built a fortress wall,
To keep the Jötnar out, and their hatred for goodness and order.
Ymir's eyebrows made this defense, the bulwark that stands quite tall,
The craft of Fathers divine, and home of Man, the Goðar named it Miðgarðr.
Your revision to the text is good, it is solid, it conveys the message aptly and succinctly. It strikes me as clear that your intent was to represent the original form of the Creation Story of our Heathen Forefathers. Which you have done, with the necessary proviso of using updated linguistics and grammar conventions, of course.
You have successfully transmitted the feeling of dubious awe which pervades the Nordic dualistic theme of creation, with it tensions and necessary resolutions - making one think toward its manifestation in the Hegelian Dialectic. In fact, you have well captured the sense of being "punched" in the affective domain much in the way the archaic English translations of the original Norse survivals do for me.
I see you have amalgamated the two extant Trinities in creating your representation. This is good, it betrays the thinking mind to a curious public.
That last bit being said, I would offer only one suggestion, and that is, rather than relying on the diehard habit of strenuously reconstructing the hauntingly beautiful original names of Gods, Goddesses, Realms, et al, I would think that modernising the nomenclature of the Pantheon would be apt. Much is lost in translation when anachronisms are held to, in that the ancient Nordics expressed boundless hoards of symbolism in their nomenclature, which your modern Anglo-Saxon is not apt to understand. Although, because I do so enjoy it, I would suggest a footnote system. So one, in true Odinic style, might take the best worlds from your laboured work.
On an auxiliary note. Have you ever applied Theosophic, Philosophic or Theologic exegesis to the Creation Story? I did this when reading the turn of the century Editions of the Younger Edda and was quite stunned to find a totalitarian depth of thought which escapes a mere perfunctory reading.
You can do it with any religious system, but since the Norse is in our blood, it a much more worthwhile and organic exercise.
Than this might help.
Try to take an Odinic view of reality. It has layers, reality does. In Seid, it strikes me, the magick that flows does so through perceptatory clauses. The soul, immaterial, can gradate through many realities, we are anchored in one aspect of reality owing our mortal carcasses. Odin transcended these petty instances when he gave himself to himself, he separated himself from self and became a living icon of existentiality.
Odin was capable of transcending reality because he did not attach strings to it.
I suspect your contention is losing a sense of the literality of the Godhead (henotheistically.) But this needn't be the case.
Take the Creation Story. The seething energies, strict polarities, represent shades of a pre-conscious, evolutionary universe. This perfectly encapsulates the awe, the majesty and the transcendent inevitability of Wyrd. Wyrd being the nexus of ALL realities. The one cycles into the next. Each necessary, and inevitable. Invincible. Here we have the Absolute we seek, in Wyrd. But the Germanic mode of time is cyclical, so that which was and that which will be are both seeds contained within all that is. So theoretically, one can hope that in the dissolution of the flesh, so as Odin freed his soul, one may some day be able to look upon the weave of the Norns and see that which is in conjunction with that which could be - thereby palpating the other Worlds (from the Anglo-Saxon Wer-Eald, or "Age of Man.")
And you have Odin. We both know the meaning and origin of the name. Wodenaz. The Woodland God. The Mad God. The Leader of the Possessed. Und so weiter. Odin is a character trait and a real character.
When we read, for instance, Harbard's Flyting, in which Odin and Thor contend by the riverside, there are many interpretations, each equally valid. You have the surface, in which one concludes that this is a tale of two Viking Gods engaging in an escalating game of roasting. However, another interpretation lies with the ages old Aryan paradigm of dualising. It is a contestation between moral paradigms. The women Grey-Beard speaks of tempting are allegories for shades of wisdom and cunning. He speaks of courting wisdom as one speaks of women. When one looks at the story in this light, one gains a new understanding. Wisdom is very much like a woman who plays hard to get. She sometimes revels in the chase, and sometimes She is resentful when you make yourself Her better by claiming Her as your own.
But yet it remains, when we explore Odin, we discover that the depth of his darkness is unparalleled. The torch is light, but that light exists as a star hangs in the High Heavens - miniscule.
This, however, has only been my experience. But, you may have by now concluded that I am very much an Odinist, in character. If you are as your Hammer suggests, a Thorsman, you may indeed prefer and necessitate the direct route - and I have no intention to force any paradigm shift on you, there are few enough harbingers of Folkish Wisdom in this World without my alienating any of them. And don't get me wrong! Sometimes I prefer the direct approach. It's sadly necessary in this day in age when people often seem to lack the intellectual fortitude to engage you Odinically (I say this as a College Student minoring in secondary education, who is frightened by the lack of character depth in his age-group.)
I just think it's good to know that there are always options.
Good to know. But you're an honest Thorsman, this much is plain to see. Not some clown who has a religious experience at a Marvel Comics expo and decides that the Blood compels him to develop a fake Norse accent and threaten anaemic British men.
Thor and the Dwarf. That was one of my favourites, too. What truly respect about Thor is his clarity of purpose. The old Nords had raised Thor up as the paradigm of manhood - his flaws were laid bare, but he always overcame them. He was versatile and not locked in a skill-set. Whereas with my patron God, Odin, he remains almost entirely mysterious and somewhat foreboding. (Which is why I rather the English view of Odin = Woden, as he is more agrarian and somewhat less ominous than the Norse rendering, Odin.) And then there's Braggi, about whom we know comparatively little.
Absolutely, the darkness is a counterbalance to the light. Sadly, however, the way the Norse Myths come to us - at the mercy of Christian scribes - somewhat obfuscates the nature of things. The darkness, the gloom, the stoicism is somewhat overrepresented in Scandinavian Asatru. Wotan, the continental Germanic aspect of Odin (specifically German) has a very warlike nature. Woden (the Anglo-Saxon) has a deeply agrarian side. It actually speaks to the psyche of both the people, because the values of their Gods reflect the necessities of their life. Norse Odin was a survivalist whose appearance of "loose" morality illustrates the harshness of Scandinavian life, and how their mysticism arose in accordance with tribulation and hardship. England has a much softer climate, so Woden is more the wizard of popular lore whose wisdom is rooted in the earth, the now, the here, as opposed to Odin whose wisdom is transcendental and otherworldly for the presence of death. Wotan, his power lies in masculinity, in primal force. Of course, it is all the same Personality, the same Deity, but the distinctions are important - at least I think they are.
Braggi/Brage is indeed a poet. We might call him Skaldatyr - the God of the Poets. According to the Younger Edda he is to be invoked by those dedicated to speechcraft and is the Ese of Eloquence. Since I am a poet of indeterminate value, it seems logical I should expand my spiritual enterprise from seeking to emulate Odin to incorporating other respective deities whose interests reflect my talents.
Another extremely beautiful work. I am getting more impressed with your poetry by the day!