Monthly Archives: February 2020

Going Deep in Iceland

At a certain point, you see with your chest, not with your eyes. Here with the tide rushing out at Kolgrafarfjörður at sundown around 2:30 pm on the shortest day, the light might be in the air, but it’s really in the water, which you “see” with its substance.

In other words, light is a substance as well, which this photograph, which can only capture the energy within it, can only hint at. You have to be there, because only a body can experience this.  However, renting a car at Harpa at 10 a.m. and rushing out to Snæfellsnes, and back to Reykjavik in time for a quick snack and the 8 pm. Northern Lights Bus Tour will only keep you in the light’s energy. You won’t become the sea. There’s not just one Iceland in the same place at the same time. And it’s not just the sea. It’s the Earth as well, here from Ríf four days later, looking up to the glacier.

I think this is what Gunnar Gunnarsson meant in his 1936 essay “Thoughts on Nordic Fate” (Nordische Schicksalsgedanke), when he spoke of salvation — not in the modern sense of rescue through Christ but in an older sense, of the healing of separation. His answer was to go home to Iceland, but I’m not sure it has accepted him yet.

Or  has  it?

Simple Beauty in Iceland

Yup, there’s the grand view of a secret beach, where no one goes.

There’s also the stick, that no one stops for.

Well, almost no-one. This is the delight that can find pure joy in a farmstead so far away across the wetlands that walking won’t bring you there.

That, too, is Iceland, as is this water that flowed over Hengifoss just a half hour or so before. Is it any less now?

You can either run after it or stand still and let I go. That, too, is Iceland.

What Are the Trolls Up to, Anyway?

Sure looks like a troll!

Kollsvík

But just down the beach, check this out:

Did trolls have a war some many thousand years ago, with huge cannonballs, or what? Because this iron is not wedged into the rock from above or behind or any such thing. It’s within the rock. I guess, only the trolls know.

And they’re messing with us.