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Octavian Balea – Silfur Egils

octavianbalea.blogspot.com

“Egil Skallagrim’s son now grew old, and in his old age became heavy in movement, and dull both in hearing and sight; he became also stiff in the legs. Egil was at Moss-fell with Grim and Thordis. It happened one day that as Egil went out along the house-wall he stumbled and fell.

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Some women saw this, and laughed, saying: ‘You are now quite gone, Egil, if you fall when alone.’ Then said the master Grim, ‘Women jeered at us less when we were younger.’ Egil then sang:

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‘Old haltered horse I waver,
Bald-head I weakly fall:
Hollow my failing leg-bones,
The fount of hearing dry.’

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Egil became quite blind. And it was so that one day, when the weather was cold, Egil went to the fire to warm himself. Whereupon the cook said that it was a great wonder, so mighty a man as Egil had been, that he should lie in their way so that they could not do their work.

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‘Be you civil,’ said Egil, ‘though I bask by the fire, and let us bear and forbear about place.’

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‘Stand you up,’ said she, ‘and go to your seat, and let us do our work.’ Egil stood up, and went to his place and sang:

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‘Blind near the blaze I wander,
Beg of the fire-maid pardon,
Crave for a seat. Such sorrow
From sightless eyes I bear.
Yet England’s mighty monarch
Me whilom greatly honoured:
And princes once with pleasure
The poet’s accents heard.'”

it continues on Octavian’s website