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Twilight of the Gods: Page 925
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conscripted by collective, historical man (Wotan), to help him restore his lost innocence, if Alberich hadn’t forged the Ring of human consciousness, which exiled us from our preconscious paradise of animal instinct, the life of feeling, in the first place. Bruennhilde’s whole raison d’etre is to protect the artist-hero and his audience from suffering the curse of consciousness.

The three Rhinedaughters surface and gently mock Siegfried’s futile search for the game he’s lost. Siegfried asks them, again accompanied by #176, whether they spirited away the shaggy haired fellow who disappeared from his sight. At first this remark seems ambiguous: is Siegfried referring to the elf who led him astray (he could of course have only been speaking figuratively), or to the game the elf allegedly hid from him? But then we hear what sounds very like a segment of either #4 (Woglinde’s Lullaby), #128, or #129 (the Woodbird’s Songs), as Siegfried tells the Rhinedaughters that if this shaggy-haired fellow is their lover, he gladly leaves him to them. Siegfried’s remarks are full of meaning for Wagner’s audience, but not for him; to us it seems clear that the elf who led him astray is Alberich, because Alberich once futilely sought the Rhinedaughters’ love, after Woglinde introduced the seminal motif #4, which is the basis for the Woodbird’s Motifs #128 and #129, and is the inversion of their new lament for the lost Rhinegold, #174. #4, of course, represents the Mother-melody of preconscious animal feeling, or instinct, as opposed to its artificial restoration in music, represented by #128 and #129. {{ Again, the music illustrating the Rhinedaughters’ mocking dance in the waters of the Rhine sounds strangely like a synthesis of water music, fire music, and the music which represented the fluttering of the Woodbird’s wings as it, once upon a time, led Siegfried to his boon companion, Bruennhilde. }}

[T.3.1: B]

Like the Woodbird before them, the Rhinedaughters now warn Siegfried of danger that awaits him. But more importantly, accompanied again by #176, they offer to grant him the game he’s seeking (presumably his muse of unconscious artistic inspiration, Bruennhilde) if he gives them something, and that something is of course the Ring, the Ring of consciousness. The Woodbird, representing music, once granted Siegfried entrance into his own unconscious mind, his muse of inspiration, Bruennhilde, and the Rhinedaughters are in a sense making the same offer now, that Siegfried should retreat to his unconscious mind in the face of an imminent crisis, that he is about to become too conscious of who he is and of his past history, and lose Bruennhilde’s protective magic, and unconscious inspiration, forever, with no hope of redemption:

 

Woglinde: (#176 >>:; 156 vari or #163?:) Siegfried, what will you give us, (#? [a fluttering Woodbird figuration almost like those heard at the end of S.2.3 just before Siegfried ran off, under the Woodbird’s direction, to find Bruennhilde, and also like those at the beginning of S.3.2 just before Wotan confronted Siegfried, when the Woodbird was startled by Wotan and flew away?]) if we grant you your game (:#156 vari or #163?)

 

Siegfried: I’m still without a catch, so ask what you desire. (#15/#12)

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