Poem 6

The original Kalevala poem can be found [here, when the relevant website works again]; introductory notes on Team Louhi are here.

Väinö rode his horse then northward
led the steed into the ocean
steady swimming toward Pohja

from the shore they then were spotted
by another jealous young man
envied he our Väinö’s profile
hard-won name and reputation
prepared weapons then this person
from the demon elk of Hiisi
sought he innards for his bowstring
all the arrows meanly treated
beaten out in soot and snakesblood

so prepared he sat in waiting
waiting for the passing Väinö
waits some days and even weeks, now
sets his bow and steadies arrow
– halted then by mother’s worry
“what are you aiming, child so dear?
not old Väinö, not the sage, son?
he’s of our line, our fine family!”

“I’ll slay him soon and his horse, too,
I’ll not stand this sage man’s roaming!”

so the mother, still tries counsel:
“if this Väinö did go missing
ever died this sage eternal
then would cease up all our singing
joy on earth then gone forever.”

Steadied bow and stayed on course, he:
“Song and joy can burn up twofold,
Väinö sink down in this water
live his life like lakebound fish do!”

loosed an arrow, loosed another
both missed Väinö’s water voyage.
third did strike and kill his horse, though
to the water fell our Väinö
was not sunken, was not drownéd-

one great wind did call up great waves
moved him on some untold distance
while the awful bowman crowed, he,
taunted Väinö on his sinking,
though lamented much his mother:
“so has gone the finest man now,
highest son of Kalevala!”

One thought on “Poem 6

  1. Pingback: Poem 5: Aino rejects Väinämöinen, again – sanna peden

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