Tracks

01. To Holmgard And Beyond
02. A Portage To The Unknown
03. Cursed Be Iron
04. Fields Of Gold
05. In The Court Of Jarisleif
06. Five Hundred And One
07. The Dnieper Rapids
08. Miklagard Overture



01. To Holmgard And Beyond

Far beyond the sea and distant lands
Came men with thirty ships
Had wanted to reach the Neva by night
But the weather was not on their side

And as the wind grew stronger and stronger
The rain ran down our cheeks
The bow was turned towards Gardar
The sail flew up again

Holmgard and beyond
That's where the winds will us guide
For fame and for gold
Set sail for those lands unknown

Osmo and Dalk, Kyy, Kokko and Ulf
Were glad to be off the oars
Turo had eaten too much again
Now hanging himself overboard

The Tostensson twins were excited as always
Adventure was their game
Myself, Hakon the Bastard
was out to find my name

Holmgard and beyond
That's where the winds will us guide
For fame and for gold
Set sail for those lands unknown

Who is "I" without a past?
A river without a source?
An event without a cause?

Threads of different lengths
Some longer, some shorter
So many of them spun together

The crones keep on weaving
The algorithm of our lives
Cause and effect, the fates of men

We know the way to Aldeigju
Upstream the river Alode
You take us to the portage
And further [South]

Long is the way to the unknown
Long are the rivers in the East
Far lies the land that Ingvar
And his men desire to reach

Many dangers lie ahead
Some of us may never return
Rather sold as a slave to the Saracens
Than chained to your bed, chained by your life!

Holmgard and beyond
That's where the winds will us guide
For fame and for gold
Set sail for those lands unknown


02. A Portage To The Unknown

We've sailed across the sea
Rowed for miles and miles upstream
Passed by Aldeigjuborg
Seen Lake Ilmen gleam
Ingvar took the lead
After Holmgard as agreed
What the end of Lovat meant
Was soon to be seen

Dripping with sweat a new day dawn on
The ropes cut flesh, as they've done in times foregone
I see my breath, my hands are going numb
Far from home we have come

An endless trail in front my eyes
A swift take off, had no time for goodbyes
What will we find and what was left behind
There's no return, get it off your mind

The water's changed to sand
Lakes and rivers turned to land
Plough up the rocky seas
Ride felled down trees
Foot by foot we edge
Once a ship, now a sled

Six regular edges and six vertices
Six equilateral triangles
Six square faces in another direction
Plato's earth transparent

Give me all you have!
Pull as hard as you can
Plough up the rocky seas
Ride felled down trees
The water's changed to sand
Lakes and rivers turned to land

The rug has been pulled from under my feet
All my life made of lies and deceit
All I have left is a symbol on my chest
My only lead on my desperate quest

Branded at birth with the sign of Perun
East of the sun and West of the moon
The road now continues, Northwind be my guide
Wherever I'm going, the Gods are on my side


03. Cursed Be Iron

Curse on thee, cruel iron
Curses on the steel thou givest
Curses on thee, tongue of evil
Curses on thy life forever!

Once thou wert of little value
Having neither form nor beauty
Neither strength noe great importance
When in form of milk thou rested
When for ages thou wert hidden
In the breasts of God's three daughters
Hidden in their heaving bosoms
On the borders of the cloudlets
In the blue vault of the heavens

Thou wert once of little value
Having neither form nor beauty
Neither strength nor great importance
When like water thou wert resting
On the broad back of the marshes
On the steep decline of the marshes
On the steep declines of mountains
When thou wert but formless matter
Only dust of rusty color

Curses on thee, cruel iron
Curses on the steel thou givest
Curses on thee, tongue of evil
Cursed be thy life forever!

Surely thou wert void of greatness
Having neither strength nor beauty
When the moose was trampling on thee
When the roebuck trod on thee
And the bear-paws scratched thy body

Surely thou hadst little value
When the skilful Ilmarinen
First of all the iron-workers
Brought thee from the blackened swamp-lands
Took thee to his ancient smithy
Placed thee in his fiery furnace

Truly thou hadst little vigor
Little strength, and little danger
When thou in the fire wert hissing
Rolling forth like seething water
From the furnace of the smithy
When thou gavest oath the strongest

By the furnace, by the anvil
By the rongs, and by the hammer
By the dwelling of the blacksmith
By the fire within the furnace

Curses on thee, cruel iron
Curses on the steel thou givest
Curses on thee, tongue of evil

Now forsooth thou hast grown mighty
Thou canst rage in wildest fury
Thou hast broken all thy pledges
All thy solemn vows hast broken
Like the dogs thou shamest honor
Shamest both thyself and kindred
Tained all with breath and evil

Tell all who drove thee to this mischief
Tell who taught thee thy malice
Tell who gavest thee thine evil!
Tell me! Now tell me!

Did thy father, or thy mother
Did the eldest of thy brothers
Did the youngest of thy sisters
Did the worst of all thy kindred
[Give to thee thine evil nature?]

Not thy father, nor thy mother
Not the eldest of thy sisters
Not the youngest of thy sisters
Not the worst of all thy kindred

But thyself hast done this mischief
Thou the cause of all our trouble
Come and view thine evil doings
And amend this flood of damage
Curses on thee, cruel iron
Curses on the steel thou givest
Curses on thee, tongue of evil
Cursed be thy life forever!


04. Fields Of Gold

Long is the way we have come
Still, nothing changes under the sun
The day we lay ahold
The wind rocks the fields of gold

Zer sum is the name of the game?
Gain or lose
My win
Is your loss
Have your cake and eat it too

Long is the way we have come
Still nothing changes under the sun
Few have found the stone
Searching for the fields of gold

The finest of craftsmen forged
For day and night
Deep down
Lost at sea
Their great feat now lies

Is a draw the only win?
Would a tie double the loss?
A fight
For existence
Life-death: 0-0

Long is the way we have come
Still nothing changes under the sun
Firmly we keep our course
Fighting for fields of gold


05. In The Court Of Jarisleif

Time to raise a toast to our generous host
Jarisleif!
Jarisleif!

Ruler of the Rus from coast to coast
Jarisleif!
Jarisleif!

May beer flow as long as we can stand on two
All the pretty girtls, come, keep us warm!
Tonight we drink, no room for depressing thoughts
Fill your horns!


06. Five Hundred And One

New friends
Last night
An offer was made

Nordbrikt
Would leave
Five hundred strong

Long is the hour when lying awake
Sleeping his hard when so much is at stake
I've reached my goal, called the final door
Behind it- three doors more

Lying in my bed
Thinking of the things they said
Time is running out
What to do I moon about

Out in the open sea I've swum without a sight
A sight of an opposite shore, a sight of some light
Turning back, staying here, my strength is running out
Forward, or I drown

Rising from my bed
Thinking of the things they said
The moment draws nigh
One chance a year when the water is high

Corridors
I run
Heavy doors
Which one?

Where did I come from? Was I already here?
It all seems familiar, yet I have no idea

New friends
Last night
An offer was made

Nordbrikt
Would leave
Five hundred and one

"Joy and sorrow we have encountered
Always stood as one
Your heart will follow, and maybe tomorrow
You will find what you seek

Go now, and don't look back!
Give my greetings to the Greek King!"

The wind flew the raven banner with pride
Eagles were soaring aloft
Filled with hope and excitement side by side
Five hundred and one cast off

So long is the way to the unknown
Long is the way we have come
At the head of the ships a horn was blown
We sailed off with the morning sun
Five hundred and one


07. The Dnieper Rapids

A terrible noise heard from far away
Drowning all other sounds
No cry of the birds nor voice of men
Just an awful groan

Silence fell over the men
As the river seemed to end
Then...

Clouds of spray, Pechenegs prey
The Insatiable One is hungry today
Avoid the rocks for all you're worth
Whirlpools gaze from the depths of earth

Like dominoes six locks will fall
One after another
The World Serpent will rise from the silt
And poison the sky

Clouds of spray, Pechenegs pray
The Insatiable One is hungry today
The violent current swept Karl away
One mistake- with your life you pay

Silence fell over the men
As the river seemed to...

A sight they had dreamed of
Now opened in front of them
Fraught with danger and travail
The river came to an end


08. Miklagard Overture

Long have I drifted without a course
A rudderless ship I have sailed
The Nile just keeps flowing without a source
Maybe all the seekers just failed?

To Holmgard and beyond
In search of a bond
Far from home I've come
But the road has just begun

Breathing history
Veiled in mystery
The sublime
The greatest of our time
Tsargrad!

"Come with us to the south
Write your name on our roll"
I was told;

Konstantinopolis
Sui generis
The saints and emperors
Of bygone centuries
The man-made birds in their trees
Out load their paean rings
Immortality!

In astonishing colours the East meets the West
The hill-banks arise in their green
In wonder I sit on my empty chest
As we glide down the strait in between

To Holmgard and beyond
In search of a bond
Distant church bells toll
For their god they chant and troll

Breathing history
Veiled in mystery
The sublime
The greatest of our time
Tsargrad!

The Norwegian of rank
In the court of The Prince
I was convinced

Konstantinopolis
Ten gates to eternity
Seen all for centuries
Your inconquerable walls
Your temples and your halls
See all, hear all, know it all

My sun rose in the North and now sets in the South
The Golden Horn lives up to its name
From tower to tower a chain guards its mouth
Unbreakable, they claim

To Holmgard and beyond
In a seach of a bond
Adventures lie ahead
Many knots lie unravelled on my thread

Breathing history
Veiled in mystery
The sublime
The greatest of our time
Tsargrad!

Konstantinopolis
Queen of the cities
Your welcoming smile
Made all worthwhile
The sweat and the pain

Bathing in gold
Endless rooftops unfold
The sun sets for a while just to rise again

Great halls
Great halls
Greatest of all, Miklagard