David Foster Wallace, "Viking Poem"

"Vikings oh! they were so strong"

The recent acquisition of the late David Foster Wallace’s archives by the University of Texas’ Harry Ransom Center will no doubt provide both scholars and fans with countless layers of information to process and debate. It has also provided this poem about Vikings, written by a six- or seven-year-old Wallace, which I cannot help but find both charming and tragic. (Not that I am suggesting there is anything romantic about suicide, because we don’t do that here.) There’s just a sweetness to this poem and the obvious enthusiasm with which he wrote it that makes me reflect on the joys of childhood that we tend to forget. [Via]