Apr 22, 2006

Summer at Little Lava: A Season at the Edge of the World
by Charles Fergus

illustration: Petur Baldvinsson

Charles Fergus introduces us to Iceland's moods, it's flora and fauna, it's seasons of death and rebirth. Fergus himself journeys from death to rebirth as he learns to accept the unacceptable and unthinkable: the violent death of his mother. He quotes Halldor Laxness:

"Who could take your mother away from you? How could your mother leave you? What's more, she is closesr to you the older you become and the longer it is since she died."

Fergus, his wife and young son rehabilitate a rustic cement house located on land that had been farmed for six centuries. Hiking, kayaking, and contemplation are Fergus' main occupations during his summer of healing.

Fergus includes a line from a poem that an Icelander shared with him: "You have not lived until you have stayed awake a summer's night in Iceland."

Do you think it is true?

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