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.
Out in the West Fjords, you can still find trolls caught in the act of being born.
And you can find Rauðasandur, the red sand beach (more like quicksand, beware), that is made out of troll stuff spread out flat as it wades out to sea.
Iceland: where the fun never stops!
It’s a thing for the end of those early winter days. Never a lonely moment in Iceland!
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.
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!
That’s why you can see it. Sometimes you see the eye. Sometimes you see the moment of your seeing.
Sometimes you glimpse your eye deep within the mind of the world.
For that, you have to go on a journey to the centre of the earth.
And there you are.
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.