Darraðarljóð (Song of Darraðar) 21

I'm really fond of the singing and especially the fiddle sequence nearly midway through the song above, "Battle of Brothers", produced by composer Trevor Morris for History Channel's series Vikings. I thought it was somewhat difficult to hear the lyrics properly, but ever since I heard it in the background during a violent battle scene at the beginning of the second season, I was pretty sure it concerned my namesakes, the valkyries. I wrote to Einar Selvik about this, and it turns out that he is actually the one who sings and has made large parts of the track (this is undeniably quite typical, me falling in love with a song and then of course, it turns out to be Wardruna)...

The text is made out of small sequences and verses from Darraðarljóð (Song of Darraðar), a chapter in Njáls saga. It describes a vision of 12 Valkyries weaving the outcome of a great battle that took place near Dublin in year 1014. This Norse poetry is both beautiful and horrendous, and draws parallels to the way the norns Urður, Verðandi and Skuld (representing the past, the present and the future) sit by the well of Urðr by one of Yggdrasils roots, weaving the long threads of destiny for every human, cutting the thread when a life is over.

The sixth verse from Darraðarljóð, which is featured in its entirety on the track, reads as follows (Norse on the left, with my own translation on the right side based on modern Icelandic).

Vindum, vindum
vef Darraðar,
þars vé vaða
vígra manna;
látum eigi
líf hans farask,
eígu valkyrjur
vals of kosti.
Weaving, weaving
the web of spears [war],
where they wander
brave men [warriors];
we will not
let his life be lost,
the Valkyries hold
this choice.

Beautiful, isn't it? I find Norse mythology to be so captivating...

I'll spare you the more grotesque details of the Valkyries' web for now, but if you are interested you will find the Norse text as a whole provided in the link below.

Historical source: Darraðarljóð (Song of Darraðar, also known as the Song of the Valkyries
or the Song of the Spears). In Njáls saga.

Photography & editing: Valkyrja.com.

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