Tag Archives: humility

Meeting the Earth Head On

As the frailty of the fence below shows, the Icelandic way of meeting the Earth is either foolish or heroic, or both.

Grótfjall from the Dunes

The Earth is huge, and humans are small, and yet they stand up against each other, body to body. It is hardly an equal relationship… or is it? The fence stands in witness.

Moods of Light in Iceland and Canada

What if the Earth were a sphere, continually focussing the sun into moods of light, like these in Breiðafjörður in November, with a very low solar angle…borgarfjordurwater

… or these in Okanagan Lake, between the Rocky Mountains and the Coast Mountains on the North Eastern Pacific Shore, in December (today!)?p1420577

To know how the planet was feeling, we would need to gather information globally and integrate it into a unified image.p1420581

With arts and sciences of dissection, we wind up talking about the arts and science of dissection, which does the planet no good at all, nor us. Let’s not forget the Icelandic sculptor Ásmundur Sveinsson, who saw his task as reducing the complexity of surfaces to elements the eye could see before the mind, and then the construction of technologies that the eye, not the mind, could think with. Things like this:

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Of course, he kept the mind busy at the same time, which is always polite. Following his principle, are two eye-poems for your eye, which I showed you yesterday. They are not word poems:

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Jökullsárlón

And because we are hospitable here and like company, here’s something for your mind. It is not an eye poem.p1320233

Kirkjubærjarklausstur

Book poems and mind poems are different things again. Poetry, though, ah, that’s a thing of the world.

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Kirkjubærjarklausstur

It is our home, but would we not be blind to call it our own? Let us just give praise.

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Kirkjubærjarklausstur

And thanks.p1390341

Breiðafjörður

And help with the braiding …

vatn

Solheimajökull

… and the weaving of the fibres of this poem …

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Rushes in Lower BX Creek, Okanagan Lake

… together.

Folk Dancing in Iceland (It’s not what you think.)

You don’t need an expensive camera in Iceland. The sun is so low to the horizon that the atmosphere becomes your lens.

p1310321What you need to do is to place yourself in its way.

vatnAnd in its focal field.

hollForget the telephoto lens and the filters and your bag of tech. You don’t have time for that.

p1370707And don’t be mesmerized by your journey.

p1310957The sun and the earth and the air and space between them is your journey. p1380099The mountains focus this light too.

p1380192So do you.

cover12What else did you think you were on this earth for?

cover22Ah, the Northern Lights.

P1400548 Well, it doesn’t matter. Iceland will focus you with its lens. p1380121Just wait.

p1370255 Be ready at any moment. This is not your journey.

p1390341This is the planet’s dance with the sun.

p1400187You are this planet dancing.