“In Winter,” Ivan Shishkin, 1883, WikiArt.

Bitter snow brought a
Harsh tale of Signý’s death.
Weaved together for three years,
Young bride of Redgin,
Son of Halvaar,
She was mother to their
Death-lost suckling son.

At first he thought it some bewitched
Dream harkened by an evil spell
Until clutching her to his chest,
He, too, was covered by
Her cold, congealing blood.
Once full of love and hope,
Her blue eyes stared blankly,
Locked behind death’s dark door.

Her wood-stiff body pale and
Red against snow-covered rock,
Redgin, the Vinlander, uttered
Mournful cries to Odin. He had
Lost his mate, his longboat and
Shield of love and life.

In visions from archaic gods,
Signý saw the peril that was her fate.
Better to die by one’s own hand
Than slowly perish of starvation
In a distant, foreboding land.

Warrior-mother in warring Norse
Tribe, Signý knew too well dagger’s
Aim, to stab small beating heart
She carried deep within and
To pierce vessels of her womb.

As cold, blood loss took its toll.
Her last sights of Labrador were
Scudding clouds and swirling snow.
A stoic Norse woman unto death,
Signý uttered no words of love, of
Faroe Isle family, none of regret.

Recurring dream after first reading about
L’Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland. 

Leave a Reply

Social profiles