Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Gullin-lappar (Golden-paws) Update: RIP Mr. Sid

[UPDATE: Mr. Sid left us last month. He developed a terrible thing called a "saddle thrombosis" and we had to have him euthanized. We will miss him very very much.]


Himself, at his best

And, as a kitten


I've been knocking this poem around since before Christmas.  It got back-burnered for a very long time, until I decided that I'd better get it done. (There's another one waiting ... maybe by next week.)

We have this cat, Sid Vicious On Your Feet by name, a great tawny boy - reputedly the Most Beautful Cat In The World.

As you can see, he is ALWAYS on the alert.

Last fall, I watched him, at the ready, stalking a squirrel across our yard.  As he moved, the wind blew the leaves and poor Sid jumped, startled.  The squirrel fled into the trees and swore at the feline intruder.  It inspired this poem.


Old Norse Prose Order Translation
Gullinn ferr til geigrðing
gnýstœririnn geira;
kyndug grimm-lig kat-fimr
koma hann um vǫlinn.
Tvistrir mǫgu úvina
valds-maðr likr frjó-korn;
jaga fat-tokt eye-lǫpp
æztan konung trjá.

Skjaldar hirðsmanns silfra
spjalla Dumbs-riks glumra;
Þinga-menn þrǫngvinn
þrapa-þengils kjaptað;
haldinn ef úhræddr
hann trýta deigliga.
forðandi skayti fjarri
flein-þundr ganga smán-lauss.

Gellanði gulli-hagr
grá-skipa í siglir;
gnistan tǫnnum ganga
gunnbráðr þil-fer kong-túsks.
tyrfa í siglu-trján
trú-lauss reð-valdr grufa;
Hann bǫl-vanar hendi
hæst frá greiner skatar.

Flýða þengill fljóta
flé-fot heiman skrefa;
mun beiða á morgunn
mattig tjal-hæst rannari.
The golden one goes to the war-thing
Increaser of the din of spears;
guileful, grimly cat-agile
comes he across the field.
Scatters many-foes
the wolf-feeder like seed-corn;
hunts strong-hearted quick-paw
the highest king of trees.

(as) Shields guards' silver
confidant of Misty-realm's rattle;
Thing-men thronging
of quarrel-king chatter.
Halting but fearless,
he growls softly;
Avoiding missiles far-off
the spear-god presses forward.

Yelling, golden-hair,
gray-ships among sails;
gnashing-teeth goes
battle-fast (to) squirrel-king's decks.
fir-tree within the mast-trees
the infidel tyrant cowers;
he curses hurls
highest from branched tree-tops.

The lord of trees flees
(and) the warrior mighty stalks home;
Tomorrow he will hunt again
the mighty high-branch runner.

Kennings Used

Verse One

gnýstœririnn geira > increaser of the din of spears > WARRIOR
valds-maðr > wolf-feeder > WARRIOR
eye-lǫpp > quick-paw > CAT

Verse Two

Skjaldar silfra > shields of silver > LEAVES
Þinga-menn þrapa-þengils > Quarrel-king's thing-men > SQUIRRELS
flein-þundr > spear-God > WARRIOR

Verse Three

tyrfa í siglu-trján > fir tree in mast-trees > man among the ships

Verse Four

þengill fljóta > Lord of trees > SQUIRREL KING
tjal-hæst rannari > high-brach runner > SQUIRREL


I hope you enjoyed this one.  Of course, now that I've written for Sid & Freya, I owe the other two poems.  Please leave me comments!  Thank you!


  1. <3! I miss my pretty kitty soo much!!

  2. Thank you! I found that writing about the familiar things makes for good poetry.