27 September 2010

The Norse Mystery

The Swedish bloodline passes down
Each man is his father's son.
Anders, Lars, Erik, Karl
Where have all the Vikings gone?

Your forbears' longships ploughed the sea
Importing death to Saxon shores
Today you send us Volvos, Saabs
Billy bookshelves, hardwood floors.

Raiding parties, rape and pillage,
Axes that cleft skulls in two
Replaced by mild mannered Borg
And Abba singing Waterloo.

Where's the Viking spirit gone?
Does time dilute your bloodline Sven?
Ikea, Abba, Volvo, Saab
Are all that's left of Viking men.


  1. A hearty welcome back! You certainly returned with a bang!:-)

    This poem goes beyond ‘simply beautiful’ and ’perfectly structured’!
    You have laid out a lively inquisitive Smörgåsbord of poetic thoughts.
    ‘The Norse Mystery’ is a journey to be enjoyed not a problem to be solved.
    There is a highly crafted welding in this poem between past and present, nearing and distancing, loss and gain, medieval and modern, …etc

    The first stanza: A soft start. One may think the poet is reflecting on his own blood line (closeness – nearness) that ends with a question full of seeping sadness.

    The second and third stanzas: the distancing. A declaration: I’m not one of you and the dramatic welding is in full force/swing between past and present, physical tangible objects and actions connoting the complexity of the poet Viking’s psychological legacy.

    The last stanza: The poet intensifies the experience. He adds a metaphysical element (the spirit) to his final question in contrast with his original question in the first stanza. Then he ends it with a conclusion that reflects a sense of resignation. It may appear to be an abrupt ending. However, it is appropriate. The ending of this poem showcases a unique ‘style’ of ending that is Frustrated Poet’s own stamp. Looking back at Frustrated Poet’s prior work, one can clearly see that he often uses a subtle surprise transition towards his endings but a powerful one that delivers the full effect of the poem.

    Well, the above is a sample of what may be shared in a poetry meeting discussing ‘The Norse Mystery.’ Other questions may be: What prompted Frustrated Poet to write the poem in the first place? Was it a hard day of shopping at Ikea and a meal of herring or Meatballs and Noodles?:-) A Saab broke down and gone bad? Mamma Mia the musical? A recent read of ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’? A visit to Sweden? A re watch of ‘The Seventh Seal’ and/or other Ingmar Bergman’s movies? Or Is it a metaphorical comparison and symbolism of a whole different culture and the Viking’s is used as escape goat?! We won’t know. Will we? Did you notice he used the English ‘Plough’ - There is a lovely non-fiction American Book called ‘Plowing the Sea.’ Did you also notice he talks of ‘Viking Men’? what about the women?;-)…

    Excellent piece of work. Well done!

    PS perhaps it is time for a new picture?!!

  2. My comment/link may not be poetic but clearly the Norse Mystery rocks;-) There is ALWAYS hope. Nothing is ever really lost...