W is for Windsong: In the world of Gossamer Steel, Windsong is the mare belonging to Coryll. A star-bred reared to match the astrological chart of the Blood-Marked sorceress, Windsong owes her unusual appearance and stamina to her Akhal-Teke ancestry. Some say that she can bend light and space, and consorts with elementals.
The Akhal-Tekes have a reputation for speed and endurance, intelligence, and a distinctive metallic sheen that led to their nickname “Golden Horses”. These horses are adapted to severe climatic conditions and are thought to be one of the oldest existing horse breeds. There are currently about 6,600 Akhal-Tekes in the world, mostly in Turkmenistan and Russia.[More at Wkipedia]
Windsong is the ninth album recorded by American singer-songwriter John Denver, which was released in September 1975. Denver’s popularity was at its peak by this time. But my fictional horse was named for my shaman’s relationship with the elements and her yoik or music. As Ursula Länsman, member of the Sámi Band Angelit says, “There is no way to experience the power of the yoik except to listen to it. Its natural character and the voices of the natural elements do not become apparent until the listener has thrown himself upon the winds.”
W is also for Willow, which is one of the ruling trees in Ogham, part of the rich folklore traditions that have emerged in The Country. Willows, sallows, and osiers form the genus Salix, around 400 species of deciduous trees and shrubs, found primarily on moist soils in cold and temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Most species are known as willow, but some narrow-leaved shrub species are called osier, and some broader-leaved species are referred to as sallow (from Old English sealh, related to the Latin word salix, willow).
In my first published novel, Spiral of Hooves, the horse central to the plot is called Sorcière des Saules aka Willow Witch. A murder mystery set against the world of eventing, the novel has been described as “A must read for any equestrian enthusiast or thriller lover alike.”
PREVIOUS A TO Z POSTS:
A is for Array ~ B is for the Blood-Marked ~ C is for Corylus Avellana ~ D is for Duskweald ~ E is for Energy ~ F is for Feeniks ~ G is for Garuda ~ H is for Herders ~ I is for Ithaka ~ J is for Junk ~ K is for Kitsune ~ L is for Lorelei ~ M is for Mojave ~ N is for Native~ O is for Outcasts ~ P is for Punk ~ Q is for Quisling ~ R is for Ragnarök ~ S is for Seiðr ~ T is for Technology ~ U is for Urdu~ V is for Vidda
The brainchild of Arlee Bird, at Tossing it Out, the A to Z Challenge is posting every day in April except Sundays (we get those off for good behaviour.) And since there are 26 days, that matches the 26 letters of the alphabet. On April 1, blog about something that begins with the letter “A.” April 2 is “B,” April 3 is “C,” and so on. Please visit other challenge writers.
My theme is ‘The World of Gossamer Steel, the SF-fantasy setting for a series of short stories and novellas that portray the tales behind the MMORPG that is central to my crime novel ‘Wyrm Bait’.