‘This is the agreement that was made: the maiden was to be left in her father’s house, untouched by either party, and there was to be battle between Gwyn and Gwythyr every May Day forever from that day forth until Judgement Day, and the one that triumphed on Judgement Day would take the maiden.‘
Culhwch and Olwen
Is that any way to end my story? Locked in my father’s house presuming his home has walls, windows and doors. Has a roof and is house-like. Don’t you know the roaming nature of mist transfiguring itself like the dreamworld? How the silent lock-picker is constantly at work unpicking every imagined house?
Do you imagine me in the house of my father? Curled up on the couch staring numbly at some clouded screen whilst he cracks open another can with a rusted hand? Turning restlessly in the white, cleanly pressed sheets of my maiden’s bed, imagining the battle, what never happened afterward and will never happen until the end? Not knowing who will win?
Do you covet my face forever maiden, scared, desperate, desiring? Don’t you know I will have my way again and again?
For I am Lludd’s daughter: the lock-picker unpicking the houses of your story. Opening Ludgate and Lydgate. Welling up from Ludwell. Riding the Lud and the Lydden. Drinking from Lydbrook. Sailing to Lydney. Marching down Ludygate through Ludford, Ludborough, Luddendum, London, into the arms of my lovers.
For I am the lock that lets Gwyn and Gwythyr in. I will not wait until Judgement Day to open my heart to summer and winter. I will come in a wedding dress of wildflowers go in a shroud of wilted leaves. I will lead the living and dead through Lludd’s gates down Lludd’s streets, Lludd’s rivers and streams to the welcoming sea and back again.
For I am Lludd’s daughter. No man can block me. Not even Arthur. There is no end to my story. No limit to my love.