Audio for Building Asgard’s Wall

Today I present an audio recording of another eddic tale that I’ve set in verse. This time, it is Building Asgard’s Wall, which was posted as text last March. In this spoken version, the words are different in a few places from what I posted, and the original post has not been edited.

Here is the downloadable file of me reciting the poem:
Eirik Westcoat – Building Asgard’s Wall

And here is the inline player:

Enjoy! Feel free to share the file. For details, see the Creative Commons link below.

This post is:
Copyright © 2014 Eirik Westcoat.
All rights reserved.

The linked audio file of Building Asgard’s Wall is:
Copyright © 2014 Eirik Westcoat.
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives License.

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The Duel, Part 1

I present another poetic rendering of a prose tale from the lore. It is the story of the first (and probably last) giant to challenge Thor to a formal duel, and it has several things in common with the last Thor story I posted three months ago about his visit to Geirrod (part 1 and part 2). Just like that tale, Snorri presents in it prose with many details, and he also quotes from a difficult skaldic poem that mentions the story as well. (The skaldic poem is Haustlöng by Þjóðólfr of Hvinir.)

Rather than a difficult skaldic meter, I have written my retelling in 20 stanzas of my usual and more accessible fornyrðislag. The spellings have been anglicized throughout. It is well known that Odin has many different names in the lore; less well known is that Thor also has many names, although not as many as Odin, of course. The reader will see quite a few of those names in this poem. Like the previous Thor tale, I present the first half here today, and the second half will follow next Wednesday. The poem’s title is simply “The Duel.”

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Building Asgard’s Wall

Today I present the tale of the building of Asgard’s wall in a lore poem of eleven stanzas of fornyrðislag with completely anglicized spelling. It is based on the story as found in the Gylfaginning of Snorri Sturluson’s Edda. It tells how Asgard got a defensive wall and of the origin of the eight-legged horse Sleipnir. The opening stanza in my poem includes a feature that is found in many skaldic poems — a reference to poetry through one of the many kennings for it. The poem’s title is simply “Building Asgard’s Wall.”

Silence I seek
for saying my tale
of the master mason
who meant to build
for the garth of gods
the greatest of walls;
with Ygg’s ale now
I utter my words.

Midgard was made
and mighty Valhalla;
for proof against
the passage of etins
the Aesir sought
a solid defense;
a builder offered
the best of walls.

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