Tag Archives: troll

Learning from the Land

Iceland has pioneered the control of Jökulhlaups, catastrophic glacial outflow rivers, in Skaftafell National Park, by being familiar with the land enough to copy its models.

In addition to the deflective butts of rock redirecting Bæjargil as it streams down from Svartifoss, the Black Falls, there’s a troll in the stream bed. There usually is. That’s the spirit of the rock, just as the water-deflecting dikes are in the distance. What? Did someone tell you that trolls are mythological? No, they are us.

Grundarfoss and Its Mysteries

I took this image of Grundarfoss on a very cold morning because, well, how cool is it that the public water supply of a major city of 872 people (huge for Iceland) is a waterfall. Very cool! So cool, I could hardly hold the camera steady.

But look what I missed, at the base of the cliff just to the right of the base of the main fall: a lava tube. Now, how cool is that! But, of course, it’s a public water supply, so no snooping around there. Rats. What about the troll at the base of the hill at the left of the image. I bet they’d let me go visit it.

Skold!

If you’re going to toss back an Einstök or a Gull, well, “Cheers, Mate!” might not do. “Skold!”, translated oh-so-lovingly, as “Skull!” will do. Oh, those viking types. They’re fooling with us.

Troll Skull at Gullfoss

Skold = skull = Schale (bowl) = skull(ing oar), ie scoop = sculpt, and so on. It is a space that fills with the energy that fills emptiness and brings forth life out of emptiness, so, to say it again, outside of trollspeak, “To Luck!”, or “Fortune be with you!” Yes, that’s right, every drink is a lottery!

Except in an early morning snowstorm in April, when you’ve been walking since 5 a.m. and the darned takeaway around the corner is closed tight, still, at. 9. What’s with that, eh! Oh, let’s ask the locals:

Right. Drinks all around, I say. Skold!

Eye and Body Thinking in Iceland

It is a wonderful thing that Ásmundar Sveinsson worked with in Reykjavik: to make thoughts for the eye to consider, in the parts of thought independent of the cognitive mind.

Sveinsson’s Troll Woman in Reykjavik

When viewing, remember that a troll is not a creature from fairy tale but any person deeply connected with a place. “Trolls”, in other words, are themselves the body thinking, in the parts of thought independent of the cognitive mind. Sveinsson was so independent that he remains, still, ahead of his time.