Water and stone both flow. That the tephra cone (Eldborg) and the stream (Bólulækur) are the same colour on this June day is part of the mystery.
Both are coloured by the sky, which gains its colour by heated oxygen, which, to complete the pattern, is (more or less) on fire. The skill at recognizing these correspondences are one of the ways in which poetry adds to human knowledge of the world, and maintains it. Once you have made this realization, you will harm neither stream nor mountain.
Does this surf at Neskaupstaðir look a little rough?
That’s because you’re not an Eiðar Duck.
They never stay long.
A Troll in Its Haunt, Kollsvík
While they’re there, they’re great fun, though.
So much light!
Stykkisholmur, 2 pm, December 20
So little need for colour. None is wasted.
This is the Icelandic Riviera.
Beautiful, isn’t it!
It’s time for the Christmas tree right now outside the Akureyri Art Gallery, but the spring tree waits, covered in blizzard stuff.
Look how it springs up as a decoration across a treeless Icelandic landscape (which is also an artwork.) A fine reminder in the snow that everything other than the ice is art, whether human made or not, and that both kinds of trees are botanical treasures imported from another world.
From a little patch of dried clay the size of an average bedroom, the wind howling off of Þorsjökull did a pretty great job of stripping the land down to its bones last week.
Wind speeds were a mere 45 km/h, which, by Icelandic standards, is a brisk afternoon breeze. Remarkably, a pair of swans and a few shorebirds were hanging on, even though the lake and the river flowing from it have almost vanished. If you’re in þingvellir these days, a trip over behind Thor’s Shield certainly won’t disappoint!
A tough choice, I know. Just a few kilometres apart, way out there on Snæfellsnes (so likely of the same species) there are the Ogres of Djúpalónsandur …
…wading together out into the storm…
…and just a few kilometres west, out at Dritvik… splashing in the waves …
…the Ogres of Dritvik, the now-abandoned Second City of Iceland, staring out into the open Atlantic.
But, hey, no problem. It’s always a good day to sit back and enjoy the sights.
But watch out!
We are not kidding about the magic. Or the storm.
… then fish boats become museums of personal memory and dry land becomes a harbour.
Yes, politics in Iceland is personal, and so is power, and so is the loss of it. It has always been so. Those could be Norwegian long boats up there in 900.