Written by Jim Shooter and Jim Owsley
Artwork by Paul Ryan
Inks: Vince Colletta, Colors: Bob Sharen
Chef’s Note: Creamsicles apparently cause bouts of existential depression in Norse deities.
Chef’s Note: The question of what fruit Thor is referring to is a curious and somewhat unsettling one. The only tree I am aware of in the ‘Land of the Norns’ is the Yggdrasill Ash, or World Tree. One hopes Thor was not referring to fruit from this tree, as they are quite possibly human embryos. Ew.
Of interest here, in the last stanza, the tree is said to “mete out fate among men” (mönnum mjötuður). The word mjötuður is related to Old English Metod (a name of the Christian God in Beowulf) and its meaning is undisputed: “one who metes out, force of destiny, fate”. The World-Tree is actually named mjötviður, ‘the tree of fate”, in Völuspá 2.
Although stanza 22 is cryptic, it seems to suggest that the fruits of this tree were seen as forming the embryos of human beings, the seed of life. They are transported into the wombs of women, and there transformed into human embryos upon a creative “fire” burning inside the belly. The womb carries the unborn child (innar skýli) until the time comes for it to be born (utar hverfa). In light of such an interpretation, it becomes obvious why the tree “metes out fate among men.” Human beings are literally born from it, grown upon its branches as fruit. As weavers of fate, the Norns were probably thought to oversee this process. *