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Genius English Translations

"Wardruna - Sonatorrek (English Translation)"

1. My tongue is sluggish
For me to move
My poem’s scales
Ponderous to raise
The god’s prize
Is beyond my grasp
Tough to drag out
From my mind’s haunts

2. Since heavy sobbing
Is the cause -
How hard to pour forth
From the mind’s root t
He prize that Frigg’s
Progeny found
Borne of old
From the world of giants

3. unflawed, which Bragi
Inspired with life
On the craft
Of the watcher-dwarf
Blood surges
From the giant’s wounded neck
Crashes on the death-dwarf’s
Boathouse door

4. My stock
Stands on the brink
Pounded as planar-trees
On the forest’s rim
No man is glad
Who carries the bones
Of his dead kinsman
Out of the bed

5. Yet I shall
First recount
My father’s death
And mother’s loss
Carry from my word-shrine
The timber that I build
My poem from
Leafed with language

6. Harsh was the rift
That the wave hewed
In the wall
Of my father’s kin;
I know it stands
Unfilled and open
My son’s breach
That the sea wrought

7. The sea-goddess
Has ruffled me
Stripped me bare
Of my loved ones:
The ocean severed
My family’s bonds
The tight knot
That ties me down

8. If by sword I might
Avenge that deed
The brewer of waves
Would meet his end;
Smite the wind’s brother
That dashes the bay
Do battle against
The sea-god’s wife

9. Yet I felt
I lacked the might
To seek justice against
The killer of ships
For it is clear
To all eyes
How an old man
Lacks helpers

10. The sea has robbed
Me of much
My kinsmen’s deaths
Are harsh to tell
After the shield
Of my family
Retreated down
The god’s joyful road

11. Myself I know
That in my son
Grew the makings
Of a worthy man
Had that shield-tree
Reached manhood
Then earned the claim
Of war’s arms

12. Always he prized
His father’s words
Highest of all, though
The world said different
He shored me up
Defended me
Lent my strength
The most support

13. My lack of brothers
Often enters my thoughts
Where the winds
Of moon-bears rage
I think of the other
As the battle grows
Scout around
And wonder justification

14. which other valiant
Warrior stands
By my side
In the peril;
I often need him
When facing foes
When friends dwindle
I am wary to soar

15. It is rare to find
One to trust
Amongst men who dwell
Beneath Odin’s gallows
For the dark-minded
Destroyer of kin
Swaps his brother’s
Death for treasure

16. [Excluded. Missing, incomplete verse.]

17. It is also said
That no one regains
His son’s worth
Without bearing
Another offspring
That other men
Hold in esteem
As his brother’s match

18. I do not relish
The company of men
Though each of them might
Live in peace with me;
My wife’s son
Has come in search
Of friendship
To One-Eye’s hall

19. But the lord of the sea
Brewer of storms
Seems to oppose me
His mind set
I cannot hold
My head upright
The ground of my face
My thoughts’ steed

20. ever since the raging
Surf of heat
Snatched from the world
That son of mine
Whom I knew
To shun disgrace
Avoid words
Of ill repute

21. I remember still
When the Gauts’ friend
Raised high
To the gods’ world
The ash that grew
From my stock
The tree bearing
My wife’s kin

22. I was in league
With the lord of spears
Pledged myself loyal
To believe in him
Before he broke off
His friendship with me
The guardian of chariots
Architect of victory

23. I do not worship
Vilir’s brother
Guardian of the gods
Through my own longing
Though in good ways too
The friend of wisdom
Has granted me
Redress for affliction

24. He who does battle
And tackles the hell-wolf
Gave me the craft
That is beyond reproach
And the nature
That I could reveal
Those who plotted against me
As my true enemies

25. Now my course is tough:
Death, close sister
Of Odin’s enemy
Stands on the ness:
With resolution
And without remorse
I shall gladly
Await my own

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