“i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)” – E.E.Cummings.
Throughout Denny Bradbury’s follow up novel to “Borvo”, “Borvo II”, the theme of love is one that plays a prominent part, be it the love of a good friend such as the friendship that has endured many ups and downs between Borvo himself and Seofen, the travelling storyteller, between a man and a woman or amongst the village community as a whole.
As Denny writes in Chapter Twenty Three ‘Mercy’ “…As Borvo rode without rest his thoughts turned to Seofon. Their friendship had endured through the disagreement and the partings.”
Love in “Borvo II” is demonstrated in a variety of ways – not just between close friends but between man and animal (Aescwine and the stray dog , Hlaf, who attaches herself to him and whom he defends with no hesitation when she is set upon) “… Aescwine was aware for the first time of a red mist of anger, so uncontrollable that he had no way to stem the energy that came with it. He rose like a goliath from his crouching position and ran towards them to defend his dog. To him it was simple and plain. She was his to defend and he did”. (Chapter Seventeen, Aescwine travels on).
There is also the love triangle between Alric, Wystan and Godgyfu, where Alric seeks out Borvo’s approval for the match, despite fearing that Godgyfu and both their families prefer her union to be with Wystan. The situation culminates in a vicious fight between the two young men when Wystan, happening upon Alric laying bare his soul to Godgyfu and asking in which direction her heart lies, is overcome by an uncontrollable jealousy and lays into Aldric, causing great harm to his love rival. It is this violent outburst that prompts Godgyfu to realise her true feelings for both men and declares “I love Alric but knew not how he was in his heart towards me” (Chapter Eighteen, ‘Godgyfu’)
Talking of Aescwine and his unabated desire to find his place in the world, the happy news of Cenhelm, Eldric the Elder’s brother setting up home with Hild, Borvo’s sister-in-law after admitting their feelings for one another is marred by the worry surrounding Aescwine’s disappearance when his desire for adventure leads him to flee rather than wait to be escorted “his very bones ached with the desire to go, he would walk until he fell asleep and then get up and go on until he found what he was looking for. Of this goal he was uncertain but he knew that when he found it he would know he had met up with his destiny”. (Chapter Sixteen – ‘ Two go, two come, one act of vandalism’).
As Borvo says “…He meant to go. He must follow his heart and when he returns, as he will, he will have found his home.”