Old Norse Family Values

holloway overhung with ancient trees n Cornwall
This entry is part 25 of 29 in the series Conversari

 

Gísla saga Súrssonar

Son of sour milk
tried to trick fate
by going under a lifted strip of sod,
making a coin with two heads
held together with rivets,
even staging his own death.

The sons & daughter of Sour
soon soured on each other,
& the blood-brother’s blood, which had dried
on the point of an ensorcelled spear,
blended with the blood of the killer
who had earlier refused such a mingling,
refused to swear brotherhood.

They outlawed the killer’s killer
(also his brother-in-law).
He went back under the sod to hide,
& in his dreams, two women
took turns filling his drinking horn,
one with mead, the other with gore,
& all streams flowed down
into the same broad fjord.


See Rachel’s photographic response: “Blood and milk.”