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To capture the true soul of a thing is an eternal challenge, one that has plagued the human race for ages, or since at least we made the disconnect between ourselves and the natural world. We attempt in fantastic ways to represent the living experience in sand, in stone, in metal, on paper, in words and music and song, with the help of silicon and the billions of transistors that feed each gadget we've come to rely on. Still, in all of our search and creation we can never quite capture the essence of what it feels like to be alive in this world. Great artists die heartbroken, because their time is done, and the ever-elusive muses have left them with parched mouths and aged, grasping fingers, still restlessly twitching with that lifetime ache to recreate the essence of the heart of the Universe. But the Great Goddess takes back what she generously grants, and we succumb once more to the deep dark warmth of her, satisfied with a life well lived, or not.

I struggled for over a month to find a fitting image for this 600th post. Some few readers made suggestions but none seemed to do personal justice to this seven year long happy accident of a tribute to a city I love so much. Finally, it dawned on me that the only appropriate thing was to pay homage to the craft I've been granted by having this final post honor the Great Mother, here in her aspect as Pomona, Goddess of Fruitful Abundance, and pray that she will grace us all with her love and care during our time here on her Planet Earth. And we, in turn, will care for this city, this island, as the least we can do in humble homage.

Thank you all for the past seven years. It's been a great run, but when the love of craft and of merely creating for it's own sake becomes ego-bound, a thing that happens to so many of us in this for-profit, monetizing landscape, it's time to return again to the source. I'm very proud of what I've done, but only because I'm not a photographer. I'm just a girl with a tiny compact camera who points it at what makes her happy, and who writes what makes her heart sing. I'll step out of the race and let this site stand, and be a completed thing.  

Respectfully yours,
Maria Alva


a.more.s said...

There would be so much to say - but I know about some things you mention, and I understand. On facebook you went for a walk - and then there was this long silence ... and I felt: something must be happening.
As I said: There would be much to more to say - but let me only say: Thank you very, very much. I will be busy with that what you are leaving here ... Haven't read it all! And for the future I have to look at Iceland with my own eyes, without Iceland Eyes. My very best wishes to you and your family.

Spur_des_Tensors said...

I just started to read your blog a week ago due to my sudden interest to Iceland, and due to your not posting for a long while I thought that the blog might be abandoned, but the idea lives on.
So I just browsed it back:)
Final words make me feel the idea is complete and thank you for it and your beautiful pictures .. :)

Charlane Brady said...

Thank you so much!

Andy said...

No - thank *you* for the past seven years. It's been a joy.

John Duke said...

Bless bless.

Guy said...

Dear Alva, It was always a pleasure to check out your blog and see the beautiful pictures (it was high on my Google Reader feed) I'm sorry to see you leave and wish you all the best!

Nick said...

Thank you so much for your work, your blog has been at the the top of my favorite box for quite some time and have checked it out reguarly, I will miss your insightful view of the country and city that you clearly love and now I have visited it, I love it too, you posted about the church on the way to the geysers, when I saw the church in the distance, we quickly pulled off the road and went to see it, my partner Jan said it would probably be locked so we would not be allowed inside but I remembered the post when your son ran inside, and I said it was ok, we went in and we were completely enchanted.
Thank you again and I hope you decide to blog again.....!

All the very best for the future Nick

Professor Batty said...

Vegni þér eftir verðskuldan allra sem ætla sér eitthvað; lángt eða skamt, mér er sama, bara að þeir séu ráðnir í þvi að vinna ekki öðrum tjón. ~Halldor Laxness

Thank you so very much.

Holly said...

Thank you for being in this space. Your pictures fed my curiosity and motivated me to seize my opportunity to visit Iceland when it came -- and that was a trip that really did change my life. So thank you, so much. Peace.

Lennart said...

I think you are making a serious mistake not continuing the blog. Yes it takes time, yes it may seem pointless at times, but you would be surprised over how many people actually are touched by a blog such as yours.

Since I live only a few blocks from where you grew up here in Silicon Valley and come from Scandinavia, where I return on extended vacation every year, I have come to like and appreciate your blog.

So please reconsider. Blogging is good for the soul, and a fantastic way to reach out to touch people one would never ever meet under other circumstances.

And not the least, it is a fantastic gift to be able to give to ones children when they are grown, a daily record of ones life, thoughts and aspirations day by day, year by year.

To stop in mid-stream is simply not an option :-)

Jono said...

Thanks for the years of insight into your world. It is a great body of work your fans and admirers will never forget.

John Flynn said...

Thanks for a wonderful trip down Memory Lane!
I will see your island with my own eyes.

Iceland Eyes is a wonderful and awesome labor of love--and self-expression--Maria--what a gift you are for the rest of us!

Augu þín eru falleg

Til hamingju!!

Viszlát Sjáumst said...

Wow. Maria, I am in shock. I was browsing Facebook and realized I hadn't seen a post from Iceland Eyes in a while, so I came here.

Half-way through reading this last post, I realized what was occurring. I'm not exaggerating when I say a pit immediately formed in my stomach along with a lump in my throat, and I almost began to cry.

A heavy sadness has descended on me, as if I have lost a friend.

While I understand your decision (and every right to make it), I selfishly wish to urge you on. However, I will have to settle for a profound "Thank you!"

Takk fyrir öll mikla vinnu þína.

Remember, the internet will always be here - and we fans will always be ready to return.

All the best to you and your family.

Ed Sweeney

Anonymous said...

I completely respect your words, your intent, and you. Thank you so much for sharing all you's been a great gift to many.

Solsong said...

This lover of Iceland thanks you for the many days that you have helped me, through your words and pictures, feel connected to a land that I love. Thank you, too, for leaving the site open. It is a wonderful legacy, and I will continue to visit it when I need a soft spot to land.

Many blessings to you!

Iceland Eyes said...

Thank you all for your kind words! Somehow the notifications I usually get via email haven't gotten to me, so I had no clue that you all had written until opening my blog today. I haven't even read them all yet, but will, and will deeply consider and meditate on all that you've shared.

Love and peace to you all...

Anonymous said...

Great blog.If you want you can visit my school at Thanks.

Stina said...

Dear Maria, I just felt I had to let you know how much I've appreciated and enjoyed your words and photos since I started following your blog around 4 years ago. I am a silent reader, never leaving comments but always enjoying. I just felt I needed to say 'thank you', your work has been very much appreciated and I will miss your love letters to the city and country of my Father. I'm sorry I'm late with my comments but the photos that stand out most in my memory are 'Gods' and 'Sunrise'. I love the feelings that both convey. Best wishes for the future. I will keep popping back to this site just to see if you change your mind :-).

The Bean Counter said...

We will miss you and your inspirational photos and observations.

Björn Hansson said...

I'm very sorry be read this, it's been exciting to follow you during the last few years - always nice pictures and interesting comments!

Thank you very much for Iceland Eyes!

Best regards,
Björn (Sweden)

a.more.s said...

If "out of the race" or not - a prosperous, good, interesting, healthy and happy New Year!

Iceland Eyes said...

I have relented! I missed posting way too much...once again, thank you all for your support! xoxoxox