The Winter Goddess stood in the snow and glanced in Eric’s direction. In his delirious state, he knew she was the same vision that Viking warriors must have seen hundreds of years ago just before they died of battle wounds.
Eric peered through the snow, but he just could not see her clearly. She was there, but somehow just out of focus – just out of reach. She looked directly at him and smiled. Her skin was incredibly pale and beautiful and her long golden hair moved slightly in the wind. The Winter Goddess called out to him in in a soulful soft voice, but he could not understand her. She was speaking some ancient dialect of long forgotten tribes of the far north.
Somewhere in the deep recesses of Eric’s mind was the vague realization that he was in the final stages of hypothermia. He had passed through the phases of shivering and dizziness and had entered the final levels of confusion and rapid heart beat.
Eric’s heart was racing like a small engine about to explode. His heart was going at such a rate that he had stopped shivering. For the first time in many hours he felt comfortable. Then he actually began to feel warm and even hot.
As he walked towards the Winter Goddess Eric shed the clothing which was making him hot. Off went the jacket, the sweater and shirt and finally the pants and underclothing. Eric strode confidently through the snow. He was warm and happy as he got closer to the Winter Goddess.
Miles away the searchers were looking in the wrong direction for Eric. The Norwegians were angry that they had to risk their own lives trying to find an American who was arrogant and foolish enough to go off alone in the Norwegian wilderness in Winter.
The American had left no note, no map of where he was going, not even a message with the innkeeper as to what direction he was headed. The searchers shook their heads in disgust at the lack of respect the American had shown for the wilderness.
But Eric knew nothing of the searchers anger or disgust. He had entered another realm; another level of existence. He had finally reached the Goddess of Winter. She smiled at him and took Eric into her arms. Her breasts felt warm against his chest. Eric had expected her skin to be cold, but instead the Goddess of Winter’s skin was soft and warm as she gently caressed him.
Now that he had reached the Goddess, Eric could finally relax. He had been walking for so long and was so tired that it felt wonderful to stop and relax.
The Winter Goddess whispered in Eric’s ear and gently stroked his hair. Suddenly he could understand her language. She was telling Eric that he was home now. That all his struggles were over and all his battles had been won. It was time to come in from the cold and feast at the long table with all the Gods and Goddesses.
Eric felt the peace and relaxation for which he had spent so many years searching. The Winter Goddess continued to hug him and keep him warm in the snow as his racing heart gradually slowed down and finally came to a smooth and wonderful stop.
- Please read the poem The Winter Wife
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