Herta, Or The Storm-compeller
( Originally Published Late 1800's )
Being a great admirer of the legends and poetical fictions of the north, I have employed a good deal of my leisure time in endeavouring to express the force of some of the best in English poetry. The following is a Danish ballad, not much known, and supposed to be of some antiquity. I have attempted to represent the various turns and transitions, for which the Danish poems are so remarkable, by a similar change of measure in English. Should it be deemed worthy of insertion in your excellent Magazine, it is much at your service, and will be followed at times by a few others, which I think are perhaps even more remarkable for their wildness and originality.
HERTA, OR THE STORM-COMPELLER.
A Ballad from the Danish.
Herta, according to Scandinavian tradition, was a goddess who presided over storms. The Prince referred to in this ballad was called, according to popular report, " Sweno ;" but little or nothing is known of his history.
O dark-eyed maid of Thasca's dell,
Here the poem abruptly concludes. It appears that there is a considerable deficiency before the last two lines, unless they may be the words of the people bewailing their lost hero, or perhaps a moral reflection of the writer.
St. Hilda or Eilda, in the original " Enda, sacred of women ;" an expression hardly to be rendered into poetic English.
The sense appears unconnected in different parts, and perhaps some lines are lost. The choruses of the Greek poets, it will be remembered, are sometimes similarly confused.
The epithet storm-compeller (which is rendered literally) will remind the classical reader of so common in Homer.