Monday, 14 November 2022

What You Can Learn from Beowulf (1998)

From one of Anthony Madrid's reviews (HERE).

What You Can Learn from Beowulf

Cliff Fyman. Fatstick Magazine Spring 1998, p. 39.

 How to accept a compliment
 If you undertake a voyage to save someone
 you don’t need to tell him in advance you’re coming
 Don’t use a weapon for what you can do by hand
 When in trouble look up
 If a king’s wife gives you a necklace for a gift
 give it away quickly to someone else
 If your rival offers you his sword to do battle with
 don’t borrow it
 If you have any doubts
 don’t say them
 If it’s going to be your day
 you don’t even need to bring an oxygen tank
 to fight a battle below a lake
 & if it isn’t going to be your day
 nothing you bring would matter anyway
 When traveling to learn to sleep with one eye open
 If you sleep in a hall with forty men
 a monster’s bound to eat the hell
 out of at least one of you
 When you meet the person who insists you borrow his sword
 which splits in half & almost gets you killed—?
 act like it’s nothing
 In fact nod like you’re honored
 when he presents you with the snapped off handle
 as a token of admiration of your strength
 No matter how many dragons you slaughtered today
 there’s one more out there waiting for you
 Stand on ceremony if that’s what the scene says
 Which means not taking anyone or any gesture lightly
 Don’t get married if you’re an athlete warrior hero
 because it’ll take away your crazy courage
 yet through fifty drifting winters
 you’ll long for the warm
 dry sleep of dreaming lovers
 Don’t let success go to your head
 but take what’s coming to you
 Enjoy your presents while they last
 Remember the names of your ancestors
 If someone wants to reward you with seven horses
 even if you have a small ship
 take them anyway
 to your tiny goat farm in the snow
 Learn to voice your direct love for men and women
 Take on every challenge no matter how mammoth the scale
 Work through the night
 Remember the names of people you meet once
 If a dragon grabs you by the neck see it
 as an opportunity to establish yourself