Category Archives: Huldúfolk

A Cold Day, and a Warm One at Buðir

December 21 is a cold day in Buðir, with not much light. It’s a day when a little human light works wonders.

Distant shots are often better than closeups.

And look what it achieves! By June 21, everything is light.

It works the other way. If you don’t honour the midsummer troll, you don’t honour the midwinter dark, or light up the night to make way for the sun. It’s just the way it is.

Baby Troll

Buðahraun

Another example of how everything comes alive at Midsummer. Note as well, the Old Norse tradition of lifting up the Earth’s skin, making an oath, and setting the skin down to seal it, as told so well in Gunnar’s Sworn Brothers.

From the German Book Club Edition of 1933. Note the Arch.

You can read a detailed post about the book here: https://afarminiceland.com/tag/the-sworn-brothers/

The Two Ways of the Icelandic Thrush

First, you sit on a troll’s head at Midsummer, when even the stones come alive. If that sounds fantastical, you should really go to Iceland at Midsummer. You’ll see. In this way of the thrush, you get to hang out with a troll. Nice.

The other way of the thrush is to be the living thought of the troll, not in words or ideas, but in thrush. Nice, too!

Remember, trolls aren’t animate beings from fairytale, but places where rocks are made into home and mind through attachment. It could be you. It could be the thrush. It could be the thrush leading you into the Earth, where you find yourself.

The Elves’ Horses Are On the Battlefield Still

We climbed Orrustuhóll, or Battle Hill, west of the convent and east of the Black Falls…

Looks Like a Soldier from the Sky, Doesn’t It

… and there in the lush green full of spirits ….

…in the midst of a harsh lava field …

… we found the elves’ horses.

This is another hiking site in Iceland that was popular in the Golden Age of the 1950s, one of the ones that made a trip on the new Ring Road a trip through national pride. Now there is room for one car to park off the road. A million tourists a year (well, maybe not this year or last) drive past, just as the elves would like it. I am honoured to have been invited and let in.