War steeds stand
an endless sea
upon the land.
Breath steaming
in the early morning air
as warriors prepare for battle--

The deep belling of the horn
breaks over the field--
Loosing them
from their positions--

In a burst of motion
they pour forth
liquid in their strength.
The ground echoes
to the beat of hooves...
Battle is begun--

Ring-Givers lead the fray,
those oath bound
join with fervor,
as on this day
are oaths fulfilled--

The smell of blood,
of sweat,
lingers in the air--
Metal meets metal,
finds the soft flesh
that has been girded for war
as foemen clash;
finding each other,
locked in a dance of death
as intimate
as any courting of lovers--

Today will some father,
some mother,
lose a son--
Someone will mourn
for a brother--
Women will weep
for the empty beds
they will keep
in memory
of fallen husbands--

Over all the clamor
the Cry of the Raven rings...
And the eerie voice
of the Valkyrie sings--

Chooser of the Slain
is she,
as she points
her spectral spear
heroes fall
to ascend to Odin's Hall--
Ever onward she rides,
working woe,
controlling the rise
or fall
of the battle's tide.

Silence reigns
at battle's end;
among the fallen
survivors search
for Kindred,
for Allies,
for Friends--
Giving aid
where it can be granted,
to others,
easing suffering
by speeding them
toward their end--

Men mourn,
ravens cry raucously,
wolves
with night will feast,
and women weep--

Yet when the banners wave,
when the war horn bellows,
once again
will men
answer the call--

Defending hearth and home,
with hearts that beat
to the thundering horses feet--

Remember your heroes,
hold them high--
Give them honor,
for with it they die--

Light the fire
to send them on their way--
Flames burn bright,
lighting up the night
a glowing pyre
their reward,
to pave their way, toward
Odin's Hall--
All who fall are not forgotten--

© Ayla Wolffe

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.

 

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.

 

Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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