Háskólavísur 08: Climb the Mountain

On a fine February day in Iceland, the intrepid students of Viking Studies walked the lands once tread by Njáll, Gunnar, and others from Njáls saga, and climbed the steep hill known as Stóra-Dímon near Hlíðarendi. Eirik skald was with them. Many weeks later, after some reflection, with respect to spiritual pursuits, on the metaphor of the climb and the magnificence of the view from the top compared to that of the bottom, he composed this verse:

Clear cold crisp air: it cuts sharply,
but victory’s view from ‘vantaged point
above the abyss is the best of sights.
Below on land, we lumber around,
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