For Readers: The Death of Baldr

Excerpt taken from Matt Thorsen’s copy of the Book of Blackwell (a primer given to all students at Blackwell Elementary School, Blackwell SD):

“The Death of Baldr”

Of all the gods, none was so liked as Baldr.  He was the god of truth and light. His mother so loved him that she had all living things promise that they would not harm him.

The gods made a game of his invulnerability, throwing things at him as he laughed

One god, however, liked to start trouble. That god was Loki, the trickster. In disguise, he spoke to Baldr’s mother and asked her many questions. In doing this, he learned that one plant, the tiny mistletoe plant had not promised to protect Baldr, so Loki handed a spear of mistletoe to one of the gods.

When the spear struck Baldr, he died.

The loss of truth and light would start Ragnarok. Without Baldr, the end was near. So the gods sought out Hel, who was in charge of Niflheim where the dead who do not die in battle are sent.  They asked Hel to release Baldr.  Hel agreed—but only if everyone mourned Baldr.

The gods all wept.  All save Loki.

And because Loki did not mourn, Baldr remained dead.