WULF in Old English

WULF in Old English

Wulf by ANON. Found in tenth-century Exeter book of Anglo-Saxon texts.

One translation/interpretation:

It is to my people as if someone gave them a gift.
They want to kill him, if he comes with a troop.
It is different for us.
Wulf is on one island I on another.

That island, surrounded by fens, is secure.
There on the island are bloodthirsty men.
They want to kill him, if he comes with a troop.
It is different for us.
I thought of my Wulf with far-wandering hopes,

Whenever it was rainy weather, and I sat tearfully,
Whenever the warrior bold in battle encompassed me with his arms.
To me it was pleasure in that, it was also painful.
Wulf, my Wulf, my hopes for you have caused
My sickness, your infrequent visits,

A mourning spirit, not at all a lack of food.
Do you hear, Eadwacer? A wolf is carrying
our wretched whelp to the forest,
that one easily sunders which was never united:
our song together.

***

Another translation:

The men of my people will hunt him as game.
They will kill him if he comes by force.

it was different with us

Wulf is on one shore and I on another
fast is that island, thickened with fens;
fierce are the men who guard it:
they will kill him if he comes with force

It is different with us

It was rainy weather, and I sat down and wept,
and grieved for my Wulf, his far wanderings,
when a battle-quick captain laid me down;
that was peace for a moment, but only a moment.

Wulf, my Wulf, it was wanting you
that made me sick, your never coming,
the unanswered heart, no mere starvation.

Do you hear, Eadwacer? Wulf will carry
our whelp to the woods.

Men easily break what is never bound
Our song, for one.

Translated by Matthew Hollis