housecarles and guests. Noise, fire, and merriment helped frighten evil beings off."
-Poul Anderson, War Of The Gods (Tor Books, New York, 1999), p. 185.
We can almost agree - if we say instead that noise, fire and merriment helped to keep evil forebodings away. But how would our ancestors have been able to differentiate between an inner foreboding and an outer being? Commenting on another of his stories set much further in the past, Anderson wrote:
"...the foregoing tale may appear to climax on a note of fantasy. You can read it that way if you like; or you can reflect that panic attacks do come upon people, and that it is told from the viewpoint of a primitive man, who makes less distinction than we do between what is inside and what is outside his skin.
"It has been well said that the past is another country. The further back we go, the more foreign it becomes. Modern narrative techniques begin to fail us in conveying some sense of eras as remote in spirit as they are in time. Myth has more power, but very few writers can handle it."
-Poul Anderson, All One Universe (New York, 1977), p. 190.
Poul Anderson wrote mystical narratives and conveyed pagan experience.
Hadding sees a god with a horn (War Of The Gods, p. 180), Heimdall. However, we have already mentioned this here. He makes Denmark safe but we have mentioned this here.
Less posts today because more activity here: swimming, a charity lunch, a film quiz and some driving between venues. Tomorrow hopefully: a walk, a Superman film and more blogging.