Wednesday, April 21, 2010

“Blood rains \ From the cloudy web”: Worst antiviral software advertisement EVAH

Caithness, 1014:

[Dorrud] walked over to the bower and looked through a window; inside, he could see women with a loom set up before them. Men’s heads were used in place of weights, and men’s intestines for the weft and warp; a sword served as the beater, and the shuttle was an arrow. And these were the verses they were chanting:

Blood rains \ From the cloudy web
On the broad loom \ Of slaughter.
The web of man \ Grey as armor
Is now being woven; The Valkyries
Will cross it \ With a crimson weft.

The warp is made \ Of human entrails;
Human heads \ Are used as weights;
The heddle rods \ Are blood-wet spears;
The shafts are iron-bound \ And arrows are the shuttles.
With swords we will weave \ This web of battle.

The Valkyries go weaving \ With drawn swords,
Hild and Hjorthrimul \ Sanngrid and Svipul.
Spears will shatter \ Shields will splinter,
Swords will gnaw \ Like wolves through armor.

Let us now wind \ The web of war
Which the young king \ Once waged.
Let us advance \ And wade through the ranks,
Where friends of ours \ Are exchanging blows.

Let us now wind \ The web of war
And then follow \ The king to battle
Gunn and Gondul \ Can see there
The blood-spattered shields \ That guarded the king.

Let us now wind \ The web of war
Where the warrior banners \ Are forging forward
Let his life \ Not be taken;
Only the Valkyries \ Can choose the slain.

In retrospect, it was probably a mistake to sing this to the Doktorling as a lullaby when she was a baby. Everyone is relieved now that she's moved on to knitting.

Olde-schoole George Webbe Dasent translation here.

6 comments:

mikey said...

I think about war on those terms, all afternoon in the blazing sun or the pouring rain, hacking and chopping and dismembering, going hand to hand and then turning to do it again, the sounds of terror and pain and death, the smells of blood and intestine and fear, and I thank whatever deity allowed me to be born after hiram maxim...

Smut Clyde said...

Scholars are divided as to whether this poem (the Darraðarljóð) is a description of the Battle of Clontarf, or merely of the invention of Tartan.

Substance McGravitas said...

Darling daughter McGravitas thinks Shub-Niggurath is a funny name. Ha ha!

Another Kiwi said...

And then follow \ The king to battle
Gunn and Gondul \ Can see there


A connection with Cricket? I would pay good money to see Viking cricket though I would wear washable clothes.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Everyone is relieved now that she's moved on to knitting.

Does she still converse in alliterative lines?

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

D'oh, the good comment comes after the post...

In retrospect, it was probably a mistake to sing this to the Doktorling as a lullaby when she was a baby.

Yeah, that "blood eagle Barbie" cost a pretty penny.