Faces in the Fire

From “pig farmer’s daughter” to teacher and author! Years of education and research have produced this transformation. Now, Dr. Donnita Rogers has kept her word to her English classes by writing “Faces in Fire; Book One of The Women of Beowulf”. Here is an excerpt from Chapter Four, “First Blood”:

“Blood of the body, blood of renewal, blood of life”

I began to revolve in the narrow space, trying to keep my eyes fixed on the feather, but it soon became a blur. The drum beat on relentlessly. I was sweating, my head spinning. Soon I lost all sense of my body and felt lifted out of myself. Had my swans returned?

Yes! I was flying! I myself had become the swan… as I floated weightlessly; I turned my face to look down. Far below me I saw… What was this? Heorot? Heorot on fire – Heorot burning! With a shriek, I plummeted to earth – hard ground rushed to meet me.

“Come back, Freawaru, come back to us…”

When I came back to myself, Mother was bathing my face with cool water from the pool

“…Freawaru – my daughter – what did you see?”

“Oh, Mother,” I gasped. “Heorot – Father’s hall – it was burning!”

A shudder passed through the circle at my words. No further words were spoken as Mother and Willa helped me to rest my feet. Slowly we began our journey back to the doomed hall.


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