The Saga of Thorfinn and the Narwhal

(A newly discovered Icelandic saga has recently been collected in Yorkshire)

By the Baltic, near Jutland, stands Ribe

Once noted for Vikings and fun.

And beautiful Freya Vigsdottir

Went there with young Thorfinn, her son.

A grand little lad was young Thorfinn,

Dressed up with a sword; quite a swell.

Wearing t’steel cap with horns set upon it,

The finest Ikea could sell.

Now they didn’t think much to the warriors:

Their axes were rusty and small.

There were no fights, nor murders, nor maimings,

No, nothing to laugh at at all.

So, seeking for further diversion,

They paid and went into the zoo,

Where they’d wolves, polar bears and some Saxons,

And strong ale and boar-roastings too.

In a pond were a Narwhal called Olaf

His nose were all covered with scab.

He lay in in the midst of his dinner,

And sometimes would suck on a crab.

Now Thorfinn had heard about Narwhals,

How their tusks were a real quarrel stopper.

To see Olaf lying so peaceful,

Offended his sense of the proper.

So at once that brave little feller,

Knowing nothing of fear nor repose,

Took his cap that had cow’s horns upon it

And shoved it up Olaf’s great nose.

Now you could see that t’Narwhal didn’t like it,

For giving a kind of a bellow,

He pulled Thorfinn inside the pond with ‘im

And swallowed the brave little fellow.

Then his dad who had seen the occurrence,

Being not one to give himself airs,

Said ‘Mother! Yon narwhal’s ‘et Thorfinn,

I’ll go to the foot of our stairs!’

Then beautiful Freya Vigsdottir,

Who by now was feeling that sad

Complained to the animal keeper,

That the Narwhal had swallowed her lad,

The keeper was quite nice about it,

He said ‘that’s the third one its gored;

But you’re sure that it’s your boy he’s eaten?’

At which Freya said ‘sure? There’s his sword!’

The head Viking then had to be sent for.

He came and he said ‘now what’s to do?’

Keeper said ‘Yon Narwhal’s ‘et Thorfinn,

‘And ‘im with a sword and cap, too.’

Then Freya said, ‘Right’s right, young feller;

I think it’s a right shame and wicked,

For a narwhal to swallow our Thorfinn,

And after we’ve paid for our tickets.’

The manager wanted no trouble,

Removing his arm-ring straight-way,

Saying ‘Silver should settle the matter,

An ounce’s what we normally pay.’

But Freya had turned a bit awkward

When she thought where her Thorfinn had gone.

She said ‘Nay! I want proper bloodgeld,

So that was decided upon.

Then off they all went to the Law Thing,

To t’lawgiver they all pledged their word;

They told ‘im what had happened to Thorfinn,

And proved it by showing his sword.

T’lawgiver gave his opinion,

The god Loki was really to blame.

And he said that he hoped that our Freya

Would’ve further brave sons to her name.

At that Freya got proper blazing,

By Thor and his hammer,’ said she.

‘What waste all my life breeding children

To feed bloody narwhal? Not me!’

(With many apologies to Marriott Edgar, Stanley Holloway, and Snorri Sturluson)


2 thoughts on “The Saga of Thorfinn and the Narwhal

  1. Bloody marvelous!!!!!!!!!!!!! – May I use it for recitation at pub sessions, charity gigs etc, please – oh, and at family gatherings, of course.


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