The MaideN in the mist

Where are you bound, all clad in mail and helm,
So wounded and alone, and lost, and lost?
Why wander you so far in this cold realm
In mountain and in pass, in mist, in mist?

I serve a lord I’ve seen, and one I know,
My father served before, in strife, in strife
Where my lord bids me travel, there I go
To him I pledge my all, my life, my life

But who are you, fair maid in this cold place,
All wreathed in mist though yet you shine, you shine?
I fear my wounded brow and wounded face
Disordered all these wits of mine, of mine

I am one long departed spake the maid
Yet still I will remain, for love, for love,
Of one like you, one stern and unafraid,
Whose courage many trials did prove, did prove

Yet was he slain, and my dead heart did break
Said she, and all around grew chill, grew chill,
To darkness did he fall, and soft she spake,
Fear not, oh man, I mean no ill, no ill

But sleep and rest and in this mist now bide
Oh wounded man so lost, forlorn, forlorn
I’ll keep all fell and foul things from your side,
And I will watch you till the morn, the morn

And in the mist, yet warm, he slept and dreamed
Of shining maid and man she’d lost, she’d lost
Of shadows darker yet than darkness seemed
Of triumphs bitter won, what cost, what cost!

Dawn came and up he sprang this wounded knight
But light and dawn strange things revealed, revealed
For gone was mist, and maid, and pain and plight
And every gash and wound was healed, was healed

This tale I’ll tell, he swore to lofty air,
Of maid so bright who dwells alone, alone
Thanks shall I give to he who led me there,
Thanks to my lord unseen, yet known, yet known

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