The next morning when the horseman led Svadilfari
to the stone quarry he knew that the wall of Asgard
would be completed on time and that
the Goddess Freyja was to be his.
He took to humming a meaningless tune to himself
and in the gloomy copse about the quarry
a young mare pricked up her ears.
When Svadilfari and the horseman drew close
the mare leapt out of the copse,
kicked her heels in the air
and pranced up to the stallion whinnying.
Svadilfari started after her and broke the horseman’s rein.
He galloped with her back into the copse…
No stone was hauled by Svadilfari that morning
and it became clear to the horseman
that he would now fail in his task.
He burst out of his disguise
and confronted the Gods and Goddesses
as a monstrous Rock Giant!
Thor leapt from the ramparts of Asgard
and shattered his head into a thousand pieces
with one blow from his hammer.
It was some time before the Gods saw anything more of Loki,
then, one day, he turned up at Asgard leading a colt.
A grey called Sleipnir which had eight legs!
He gave the colt to Odin with these words,
“No horse in all Nine Worlds is swift as this horse.
Upon his back you can ride wherever you please,
over sea, and through the air. He will even take you
into the land of the dead and back out again.”