Category Archives: Land

Dynjandishæði

It is good to remember that a waterfall, such as the great Dynjandi, is just a fall. That’s to say, it’s a space where the lifting and holding energy of solid ground becomes its opposite, the energy called a fjall. A fall here is not a verb. It is a space, which creates the verb. To get a handle on this energy, its good to stand at the top of a waterfall, and feel oneself falling with it. The earth falls from beneath one’s feet with vertigo.

Now you are in Iceland. It does for you what it doesn’t do for water: it catches you and holds you. It is that moment when the keel of a boat rises and stops swaying in the sea, the landing when it is held. Don’t fight it. It only becomes your story when you don’t fight it.

Spring Fun With Old Friends and New Ones on the Jökullsá

Since the raven and her mate circled around all the time, keeping an eye on things, one day at Skriðuklaustur, when the geese arrived to wait for spring, I sat down on a hill and waited to catch the raven, framed by the geese! What fun! Gunnar’s house is a happening place, out there in East Iceland, I tell ya!

Alas, I failed. While I was waiting, the geese kind of waddled around honking a bit and closed my frame, and the raven was, well, quick! So, not centred. Well, ravens and humans are like that, eh. I’m thinking that the geese are not amused by either of us

Non-Human Maps and Great Story-Telling in South Iceland

I hope these two images from show how before there were roads, making a human map of the landscape…

Near Hellisnes by Fjaðrárgljúfur

…there were lavas and rivers …

Skaftá

… making a map at once spiritual and far beyond the human. Traversing them, each journey is its own map, or, to put it another way, every journey is a story, passed on as story. An ideal writing conference in Iceland would go to the heart of this kind of storytelling. All else follows, or leads away.