And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!
- And did those feet, William Blake

mandag 21. juli 2014

Seamus Heaney in Iceland

To a medievalist, summer season is conference season, and in the course of June and July several conferences have been arranged and are being arranged for the purpose of bringing together people who study the Middle Ages in some capacity. I myself gave a paper at the annual International Medievalist Congress in Leeds, and in time I might dedicate a somewhat lengthy blogpost on this wonderful experience. I'm still composing myself in the aftermath of the congress and finally moving out of my apartment, so I'm still not in a frame of mind suitable for writing lengthy blogposts. In the interrim, here is a poem by Seamus Heaney, which is a friendly nod to my fellow medievalists who last week participated at the New Chaucer Society at Reykjavik. 

Ingolfr Arnasson at Reykjavik
Johan Peter Raadsig (1806-82)
Courtesy of Wikimedia

A Postcard from Iceland

As a dipped to test the stream some yards away
From a hot spring, I could hear nothing
But the whole mud-slick muttering and boiling.

And then my guide behind me saying,
'Lukewarm. And I think you'd want to know
That luk was an old Icelandic word for hand.'

And you would want to know (but you know already)
How usual that waft and pressure felt
When the inner palm of water found my palm.

The Althing
W. G. Collingwood
Courtesy of Wikimedia

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