You never know what you will come across on the walls of Reykjavík

I hesitate to call this graffiti, but whatever it is, I love it. It doesn’t hurt that the verse is by my favourite poet, Tómas Guðmundsson:

2013-04-08 16

Click to enlarge

My attempt at a translation:

By the edge of the dock the town has fallen into a trance,

and lowly hovels are turned into heavenly temples.

And overhead the northern lights perform an all-night dance

in naked glory across the roadless sky.

From Tunglskinsnætur by Tómas Guðmundsson (1901-1983)

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4 thoughts on “You never know what you will come across on the walls of Reykjavík

  1. Great photo! Is there anywhere you know where it’s possible to read Gudmundsson’s poetry in English? If not, I may have to learn Icelandic!

    • I think learning Icelandic to be able to read Tómas is worthwhile in itself, but to answer your question: I know of French, German and Scandinavian translations of his work, but none in English.

      • Oh thank you! I might try looking for a French translation… and maybe dip my toe into the water of learning Icelandic!

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