Opera Stories from Wagner
By Florence Akin
Public Domain Books
Siegfried Reaches the Mountain
A heavy storm arose as Siegfried and the bird neared the foot of the mountain where Brunhilde slept. There were peals of deep thunder.
The sky grew very dark. The great boughs of the trees swayed with the wind.
Siegfried took shelter under a low spreading fir.
The storm did not last long, and as the light again broke through the clouds, Siegfried looked about for his little guide, but all in vain. The bird had fled.
Siegfried started on up the mountain, when suddenly the giant Wotan stood before him.
“What are you doing here?” demanded Wotan.
“I am going to the top of this mountain. There a maiden lies sleeping. I will awaken her, and she shall be my bride.”
“Go back to your forest!” commanded Wotan. “This mountain is encircled by fire.”
And stretching forth his arm, he barred the path with his mighty spear.
Siegfried quickly drew his sword from its sheath.
“This is the magic spear that rules the world!” said Wotan. “Put away that sword, or the spear that once shattered it will shatter it again!”
“Ha!” cried Siegfried, “then you were my father’s foe!”
There was a flash of Siegfried’s blade, then a crash that echoed over mountains and valleys, and Siegfried had shattered Wotan’s spear. It lay in splinters on the ground.
Wotan stepped aside and sadly bowed his head upon his breast.
He knew this meant the downfall of the giants. No longer would the earth be ruled from fair Valhalla’s heights.