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The Valkyrie: Page 395
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fall! – Let this be the Valkyrie’s task. (He storms away and is soon lost from sight among the moutains on the left. #83; #20a?; #78; #81?; [[ #84 ]]; [[ #85 ]])

Bruennhilde: (remaining where she is, shocked and stunned: #37?; #81) Thus have I never seen father of victories … ! (She bends down sadly and picks up her weapons, with which she again arms herself. #81; #77) The weight of my weapons weighs heavy upon me: - #77) when I fought to my liking how light they were then! – (#77) To an evil fight I creep today in fear! (#66?:; #64 vari on oboe: She broods to herself and then sighs.) Alas, my Waelsung (:#66; :#64 vari on oboe)! (#81) In deepest grief a faithful woman must faithlessly forsake you! (She turns towards the back of the stage. #83)

#84’s embryo was first heard as Wotan complained to Bruennhilde during his confession that he found with loathing (“Ekel”) always only himself in all he endeavoured to do (i.e., in all his efforts to redeem himself and the gods from Alberich’s curse). It seems, then, that in Wotan’s anger at Bruennhilde he is really expressing anger at his own folly in having staked the meaning of his life on an illusion, an illusion to which Bruennhilde - freely given to expressing feeling without the constraint of having to deal with ideas and their contradictions - now gives voice after Wotan has already resigned himself to its futility. However, as Wotan decisively proclaims that Siegmund shall fall we again hear #83 telling us of Wotan’s desperate need for a hero freed from the gods’ laws who can redeem the gods by taking aesthetic possession of Alberich’s Hoard of knowledge, Tarnhelm of imagination, and Ring of consciousness, so that Alberich cannot restore his lost power. This immensely powerful scene ends with an extraordinarily poignant, drawn out variation of #64, the main love motif, on oboe, as Bruennhilde contemplates the shocking necessity of betraying Siegmund.

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