Above our firmament of endless stars no wickedness is found in realms where beauty holds unending sway across celestial dominions. Escorted, as this absolute attribute is, by everlasting duration. Nonetheless, mistakes occasionally occur even at these lofty heights. Errors similar to those of unresolved equations, which eventually trickle down into this artless conglomeration of mixed motives and crude desires. Each new dilemma residing in an unsettled dialectic slowly spreading into further moral confusions within the confines of a fixed arena. Battlegrounds, dare one suggest, localising in the epidermal machinery of specific individuals.
“I’m not that man.” Loki turned to shoot Troll an extremely dirty look. “We tried it your way, but it’s like I told you on the journey over here. This isn’t going to be fixed by a few rose petals and some mumbled words. She’s our friend. She’s just like us. We’d want revenge, and that’s what she wants. Right enough, Holda?”
As much as she didn’t want to, Holda found herself hesitating before agreeing. Uneasy at negotiating within the free flow of conversation.
“I guess it depends on what type of revenge.”
Loki shrugged, “well I suppose that’s up to you. It’s your revenge, after all.” Holda shrugged in return.
“I don’t like the way she is smiling, Loki.” Visibly, Loki didn’t either. Although this was primarily because he felt it necessary to add some qualifying comment to his previous statements.
“Just don’t make it fatal, or bloody.”
“No death or dentistry,” added Troll.
She could survive social indignities, mused Holda, as long as she didn’t have to live with her own recent biograph. Sensing this, Troll resounded, “It’s probably going to take you time to come up with a plan?”
Holda groaned, and then went silent.
Actually, she already had a few well-formulated schemes percolating inside her tormented brain.
“At least take some time before you spring it on us. Undoubtedly, surprise lends something extra to the act.”
“Oh, you’re going to be appalled. Nor merely surprised.”
Once they realized she’d broken free from their anxious consolations, Holda imagined the word “appalled” wouldn’t even begin to describe her worshipper’s reactions. Reflexively, Troll laughed with resignation, or highly attenuated dread.
Making matters worse, she felt contemporary Britons (such as Troll), simply refused to read apocalyptic writings on the wall in anything other than the most sedated terms. Native repercussions best understood as additional, tortuous, repudiations of themselves as bonded community. Undoubtedly implying, in its turn, that these further self-negations grimly contribute to the anesthetized cultural atmosphere of our groggy times. Almost bewitched by soporific gloom, citizens claim to be fearful of the potential anarchy unleashed by previous tsunamis of rebellious-red and revolutionary-black ink. Indeed, it is preferable to sleep and to suffer through their woes ..... they claimed. A policy encouraged, of course, by the servile lackeys of a governing elite who are cunningly confident of enslaving their chattels through televisual terror and debt-based slavery. Either way, the vast majority of Western men showed all the signs of having retreated into textless idiocy and rhetorical trauma. Accompanied, as they disgracefully are, by certain prominent members of the body politic whose careers demand a professional hostility towards revivifying effects in bequeathed books, mythic stories, and tribal poetry. To the staggering extent that these “scholars” cast every refusal to surrender beneath prevailing conditions as itself a defeat: championing, thereby, collective nescience as communal bliss. All continuing, in its turn, to ease the mass of men into sinking ever more profoundly into their cheery serfdom; half-drowned in testosterone and illiterate posturing. Each one of them echoing (without the slightest shred of irony), “who would have it otherwise?” Yet, literature and politics are still the best spiritual witnesses of a People. Making them, thenceforth, aspects of Troll’s religion; because Asatru is pure discourse.
Sarcastically, Loki quickly swerved their car towards the roadside.
In all honesty, he was more amused than concerned, but always erred on the side of caution. Perhaps this was why some critics claimed that mighty Vril-Dragons had brought him to birth in Greenland. Their fiery aim being to personify Contemporary Art in athletic shape and sinuous form. His very musculature speaking volumes on these genetic themes. In himself, Loki was statuesque and strong ..... in a quizzically mountainous manner. Nonetheless, his handsome, classically proportioned face, grinned with bronzed, trans-indigenous, etchings. Overall, his look was the very pinnacle of blended features characterizing globalization.
Loki nearly growled. “Quiet my spoilt old Troll, or I will beat you like in the old days.”
Partly, at least, he said this because he wasn’t sure of Troll’s meaning.
“Art, my dear boy, is Great Nature. As are all the best things in this life!”
Loki didn’t respond, so he continued,
“As a diverse range of human activities, as well as the products of cosmic endeavor, such creative enterprises include objects, or images, in fields like acting, poetry, painting, sculpture, architecture, and even sexual delight.”
Loki pretended to concentrate on parking. Entertained, Troll continued, “Thus, when considering the decorative arts, this often involves assembling artefacts wherein practical considerations of usage become secondary. Especially, I suspect, in theatre and dance. Indeed, neither manipulation, nor coercion, need be the consequence of these activities. Yet, without contradiction, Modernism remains haunted by its inevitable political dimension.”
“I thought you two saw yourselves as opponents, or competitors, or rivals, or something?” Holda straightened her lavender headscarf, while looking in the front right wing mirror.
“Not as simple as this my sweet,” Troll retorted. Rather like your own chequered history in Italy, the boy and I have always enjoyed a complex relationship. Exemplified, possibly, by our first meeting in Norway during the days I dreamed of building a pyramid of human skulls to honor the Living Elements of Soul. Particularly of Soil and Water. Artistically, it would have been a radical piece way above the likes of silly little Damien Hurst in our present neo-decadent era. But, regardless of tradition, our good-looking reviewer decided to attack my work as primitive and reactionary. He felt the only real outrage was to be found in synthetics. Thence, against the timeless truths of ecology, my Loki championed a complete defeat of Nature at the service of so-called Transhumanism. We even came to blows about it. For all of our young buck’s hyperbole, however, I have been proved right. Environmental devastation has been the inevitable outcome of his stance: a basic disrespect for the very substances of Existence. In like manner think, my lovely Holda, of your own recent Arctic experiences. I warned Loki over and over again that the hubris behind unbridled, financially driven, computerized, interference with Our Blessed Mother Matrix, was unholy and unwise: albeit to no avail.”
Loki uncomfortably shifted in his seat as their car came to a halt. Intellectually diverted by his friend’s recoiling, whilst simultaneously enjoying his reputation of living like an aristocrat, Troll resumed his initial conversation with the Asgardian.
“Until, the 17th century, my beautiful youth, the term art referred to any mastery –undifferentiated between crafts and sciences. Nowadays, due to your ideological influence, it is applied to the fine arts alone. Despite the fact aesthetic considerations remain interwoven with any acquired skill.”
Loki flexed his biceps. “Spoilt old Troll, you are asking for trouble.”
Troll pulled Loki’s hair provocatively, but playfully. “I will have my say, whippersnapper. Modern Art, thereby, has become increasingly organized in terms of mimesis, not the communication of emotion. Singularly, amid the Romantic period, art took a few healthy steps to recover intuition. Although, regrettably, expressions of imaginative venture stemming from subconscious agencies have virtually disappeared. Nonetheless, our Ancestral Faith endures inside Imagistic, Esoteric, Dada, Surrealist and Mystical circles. Impelling, a vast number of Asatruar to increasingly focus their worship on the Feminine Principle. Observably, we Asatruar pray to Her as fertility, because when all confessed and finalized, we practice a sexual religion: occasionally invoking Her as Void, Fate, or Matter. Every utterance meaning – if these acts of worship be valid at all – we uniquely express our adoration of such Tribal Mothers. Especially since these physical aspects of the Absolute hold more sentient secrets than people think. Without doubt, any close examination of blood and semen quickly reveals they testify, in themselves, to metaphysical planes beyond their physical manifestation. Facts, even this estranged generation treats with the utmost caution. Vaguely perceiving, as they do, that any major disjunction between life-giving sources and technological culture posits a potentially catastrophic imbalance in human affairs. Unswervingly, this is why we followers of Europe’s Old Testament brazenly identify ourselves as perennially Heathen. After all, we Asatruar continue to realise two fundamental truths of brute Being. Firstly, our roots originate within inhuman spheres, while, secondly, everything starts with women. Be it either pleasuring flesh, politically astute intellect, or individual salvation. Consequently, our initial, unrepayable, debt, is to the venerable Desir. Unquestionably, we are utterly dependent on them, along with their Mothers, the Norns. So, our Heathen interaction with the Feminine is the best barometer of social health and wellbeing. Everything regarded, we Heathens know that if women are seen as trivial, secondary, or merely as property – instead of nurturing and sustaining companions – then each communal ill is apt to rapidly multiply.”
Holda listened carefully, because it was always a mistake to underrate Troll. She pondered, as he spoke, whether revenge could be added to his proposed lists of pleasure? In that moment, Holda unexpectedly became mindful of her long lost husband Benito. He had married her due to the “erotic genius”, she allegedly possessed. At least according to local, Romagnian, gossip. Deserved, or otherwise, sensual exploration (as Holda knew from first-hand experience) only proved achievable through a partner equally adept in these affairs. In other words, with the assistance of a man, or woman, who could maintain libidinal intensities inside the erogenous regions of semiconscious release: a place located between those psycho-chemical tensions producing repression or orgasm! Holda sighed at the knowledge that all of these satisfactions had been prematurely taken from her, along with her individual quest to recover innocent joys. This is why it was time for revenge. Psychologically conflicted, Holda found herself overwhelmed by sensations of naivety lost. Tears welled up in her emerald eyes. A slight cough tickled her slender, sculpted, throat. Without reason, Holda began to visualize her long ago visits to Troll’s cottage at the edge of Titchfield. Located, as it was, near the luscious river Meon in Hampshire. She would spend days wondering with him through this idyllic location learning about historical auras, and morphogenetic arenas – easily dating to the 6th century. Holda equally learned that nearby Fareham, from the medieval period onwards, operated as a small port: accumulating along its timeline friendly ghosts, followed by political specters, after domestic spooks; all memories, which made her smile. Relatedly, Troll would often converse with her about these presences – linking them to the ruins of a Premonstratensian Abbey at the very bottom of Fishers Hill; a ruin replete with tales associating this stately pile with William Shakespeare. A territorial and astral link, Holda thought, most likely established through the Bard’s patron: the Earl of Southampton. Developing these incisive snippets, Troll would converse in unnerving detail on the Jutish tribe, the Meonwara, as the first people inhabiting this area. Cousins to the Jutes (by all accounts), hailing from Denmark. And as such, they founded Titchfield, giving their very name to the land. As he spoke, Holda noticed a strange glaze enter Troll’s eyes: memorably so, when he appended the large field near their settlement had once belonged to a man with the name of Ticca. He often mouthed, although maybe for dramatic effect, Ticca’s fields eventually became the village of Titchfield.
Dramatization or not, it was obvious to everybody Troll loved his village home. His essence felt at one with its environment. Despite rumors hinting distant ogre-like relatives of his still lived in less fashionable Fareham. Potentially, thought Holda, this explained why Troll avoided those roads leading towards market when taking her for a drink in the Queens Head pub near St Peter and St Paul parish church. Uncharacteristically, Troll would speed along lanes outside the grey walls where this lovely ecclesiastical relic stood firm. Panting rapidly, as they rushed along, it had been established since 680 – making it one of the oldest used churches in England. Eventually collecting his decorum over a local ale, Troll supplemented that mention had been made of Titchfield in The Domesday Book itself, wherein “Ticefelle”, with a mill and farms, was described as a successful community – though tiny by today’s standards with a population of only 160 human spirits. He even quoted chapter and verse, reciting in demotic accent, “The King holds TICEFELLE. It is a berewick, and belongs to MENESTOCHES. King Edward held it. There are 2 hides; but they have not paid geld. (There) is land for 15 ploughs. In (the) demesne (there are) but 2 oxen (animalia), and (there are) 16 villeins and 13 borders with 9 ploughs. There are 4 serfs, and a mill worth 20 shillings. The market and toll (are worth) 40 shillings.” Theatrically, Troll would then conclude his rustic ruminations with a verbal flourish enumerating variations in the spelling of Titchfield seen in an extant feudal record preserved in the local Town Hall. Written there, Troll emphasized, it appears as “Thechefeld”. Thence, having more or less exhausted the superficialities of his topic, Troll contextualized his diatribe by saying it is also written that Henry V – prior to Agincourt – and Charles I, before his imprisonment at Carisbrooke, had rested in the village.
Too many interrelated themes were being woven throughout their car. A realization jolting Holda back into her painful present. Loki, for his part, felt impervious to the assaults of Troll. In the long run, he knew all about the composition of Modern Art. Personally, he believed sex, like art, had a limited number of functions throughout its history ..... making its purpose relatively easy to quantify. There was too much mysticism at large – at least to his mind. All guaranteed by the plethora of girlfriends who found his views a physical turn-on. He recalled previously speaking about these topics at the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in Bloomsbury Square, London. Focusing, as he had done, upon a disapproving older woman who unfortunately positioned herself in the front row of seats. Pointedly, therefore, using his microphone as a phallic prop, Loki metaphorically attacked the aging prude by saying:
“We (he had no intention of explaining to whom the pronoun should be applied) reject any unspecified purposes in sex, or art, as hostile to reason. Such epiphenomena simply fulfil subjective functions of meagre importance. In this sense, art, as well as sex, are activities defined by virtue of their very utility, and, therein, are unproblematic.”
The matron stared at him with a look of utter distain. Sadly, for her, this was equivalent to waving a red rag at a bull. Infuriated, Loki gathered himself and threw argument after argument at her like a series of javelins. Attacking, spear by spike and rod by lancet, with artillery he had accumulated as a wealth manager at Coutts. To this day, he found himself staggered at his depth of recall regarding the incident.
“If rejected,” Loki bellowing, “the following claims seem to naturally arise:
1. We have a Basic human drive for orderliness. At this stage, art, or sex acts, are neither a passion, nor a compulsion, but an appreciation of structure and practicality.
Assertion, then, is our birth-right. Persons starting from this opinion develop by degrees their rude improvisations into industry.”
Undeterred, the biddy continued to give him an evil glare. Viewed so, Loki began to picture himself as similar to one of those gypsy-like guys who waited table in cheap eateries across the city. They all had coarse brown, spikey, hair, designed to show they were the type of brute who could either take care of his woman, or slap any resistance out of her. Loki, on the other hand, justified his behavior as a necessary counter-attack, not simply the act of a thoughtless lout trying to make a quick buck. Self-vindicated, his larynx seethed:
2. “Our experience of the mundane. Sex and Art provide a way to experience one’s position in relation to economic obligations.
Forget ancient critics when they ramble on about Jupiter’s eagle symbolizing our imagination taking flight above the sensual world. We moderns prefer to clip the feathers of this old bird.” Provocatively, he eyeballed the old buzzard “because the concept of majesty in creation is something which leaves us cold – being merely a determination of words. Clearly, most scholars who deal with rock paintings remain aware of the potential trap posed by the phrase art for art’s sake.” Relishing these moments with thunderous clarity, his memory blurred the remaining story into the tale of a tantrum fully warranted. She had been told a few home truths, nothing less, though she probably couldn’t accept them anymore than Troll.
Their car remained stationary. Loki felt justified back then ..... and now. This contemporary world had been remade in his image. Every structure, each mechanism, all of the purposes of science and art, forming an edifice surrounding the natural processes of the Earth. He had won. Loki the winner. Following all of these centuries of struggle with Troll, he had ultimately gained the advantage. In one body, he, Loki, was Futurism. He contained his own scattered antecedents in one physical form. He was Tamerlane the Great, Christopher Columbus, Napoleon, Brunel, Guglielmo Marconi, Alexander Graham Bell, Sir Francis Galton, Adolf Hitler and J. Robert Oppenheimer. Loki was the main-man. Grasping this, he experienced a palpable erotic charge pulse through his body as Holda’s pendulous breasts brushed against the metallic top of the automobile door when she stood to leave her seat. Only in his ersatz world could this instinctive pleasure be heightened to a greater pitch than mammalian longing: a sphere of manufactured freedom and relentless satisfaction. Herein was the vindication of the artificial. Loki stretched, smiled, and blew a kiss at his travelling companions, before throwing the copy of MoneyWeek he was reading onto the dashboard.
At their approach, Mr Jobblesworth, landlord of the Fishermans Rest, rushed to greet his regular afternoon guests. Slightly bowing to Holda, he noticed that she looked her usual million dollars, dressed in her Chopard sunglasses and tight cream slacks. Holda’s elegant, pale, features perfectly suiting the beer garden overlooking the river. He nodded at Troll nervously, and patted Loki on the shoulder like a brother. From his own perspective, Troll particularly loved their versatile menu, with its variety of appetizers, sandwiches, and soft beverages. As an aesthetic extra, this pub was Titchfield’s traditionalist jewel. It feasted the eye with exquisite furnishings and breath-taking views. Nevertheless, beneath all of the cheering luxuriance, Loki and Troll watched Holda’s unending discomfort.