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In the house a shield around him.
Better had it been to send me
Low to live beneath the sea-foam,
Than to be an old man's darling;
Better far the whiting's sister,
Than an old man's slave and darling.”
All that day the maiden wandered, All the morrow sad and weary, So the next day; till at evening, As the cruel night descended, Lo, she gained the curving sea-shore, Lo, before her, then, the ocean. All the evening wept the maiden, All the night long wandered weary, Up and down the pebbly inargin; In the morning looking round her Fixed her maiden gaze intently On the headland jutting seaward. In the sea a little distance Stood a stone of many colors, Gleaming in the sunlight golden ; Toward it leaped the little maiden, Thither swam the luckless Aino, Up the shining stone had clambered, There a moment fain to linger, When upon a sudden swaying Seaward, then a moment sinking Down upon the shiny bottom, Far beneath the wave of ocean Fell the stone of many colors. With it fell the luckless maiden Clinging to its rocky bosom, With it sank the maiden Aino Down beneath the bed of ocean. So the little maiden vanished, So the luckless Aino perished.
WOOING OF THE MAID OF BEAUTY.
Translated by John M. CRAWFORD.
AINAMOINEN. Come, fair maiden, to my snow-sledge,
By my side I wish thee seated.
MAID OF BEAUTY. Tell me what thou wishest of me,
Should I join thee in the snow-sledge.
WAIN. Thou shalt bake me honey-biscuit,
Shalt prepare me barley-water,
Thou shalt sing beside my table,
Shalt rejoice within my portals,
Walk a queen within my dwelling,
In the courts of Kalevala.
MAID. Yesterday at hour of twilight
Went I to the flowery meadows,
Where the sun returns to slumber;
There I heard a song-bird singing,
Heard the thrush in simple measures,
Singing clearly thoughts of maidens;
How to live in greatest pleasure,
And in happiness the sweetest,
As a maiden with her mother,
Or as wife beside her husband.
Thus the song-bird gave me answer:
“Bright and warm are days of summer,
Warmer still is maiden freedom;
But the lives of married women
Are like dogs enchained in kennel."
Wain. Foolish is the thrush thus singing,
Nonsense is the song-bird's twitter;
Wives are queens and highly honored.
Come, sweet maiden, to my snow-sledge;
Come with me and I will make thee
Wife and queen in Kalevala.
Maid. Never enter I thy snow-sledge,
Till thou split a hair exactly;
Till thou peelest me the sandstone;
Till thou cuttest me a whip-stick
From the ice and make no splinters,
Losing not the smallest fragment.
I will go with that one only
That will make me ship or shallop,
From the splinters of my spindle,
From the fragments of my distaff.
Wain. There is no one in the Northland,
No one under vault of heaven,
Who like me can build a vessel,
From the fragments of the distaff,
From the splinters of the spindle.
Wainamoinen straightway journeys
To the spot of magic labor,
Built and launched his magic vessel
For the hostess of Pohyola,
Dowry of the Maid of Beauty
Sitting on the arch of heaven,
On the bow of many colors.
Now he decks his magic vessel,
Paints the boat in blue and scarlet,
Decks the prow in molten silver.
Wainamoinen, the magician,
Steps aboard his wondrous vessel,
Steers the bark across the waters.
Fair and goodly maid Annikki
Stood one morning on the sea-shore
Washing in the foam her dresses,
Rinsing out her silks and ribbons.
Looking through the fog and ether,
Looking through the clouds of heaven,
She sees far out on th' horizon,
Something darkle in the sunlight,
Something blue upon the billows,
Speaks these words in wonder guessing : ANNIKKI. What is this upon the surges ?
What this blue upon the waters ?
What this darkling in the sunlight ?
'Tis perhaps a flock of wild geese,
Or perchance a blue duck flying.
Art thou, then, a cliff of granite ?
Or perchance a mighty oak-tree,
Floating on the rough sea-billows ?
Art thou, then, my father's vessel,
Or my brother's ship of magic ?
It is not my father's vessel;
'Tis the ship of Wainamoinen,
Bark of the eternal singer.
Whither sailest, Wainamoinen,
Whither bound, thou friend of waters,
Pride and joy of Kalevala ?
WAIN. I have come to catch some sea-trout,
Hiding in these reeds and rushes;
Catch the young and toothsome whiting.
ANNI. Do not speak to me in falsehood,
Know I well the time of fishing;
Long ago my honored father
Was a fisherman in Northland.
Very well do I remember
How the fisherman disposes,
How he rigs his fishing-vessel.
Hast not come a-fishing hither.
Whither goest, Wainamoinen?
Wain. I have come to catch some wild geese,
In these far-extending borders.
ANNI. Know I well a truthful speaker,
Easily detect a falsehood;
Formerly my aged father
Hither came to hunt the wild geese.
Very well do I remember,
How the hunter rigs his vessel,
Bows and arrows, knives and quivers,
Dogs enchained within the vessel,
Pointers hunting on the sea-shore,
Setters seeking in the marshes.
Tell the truth now, Wainamoinen,
Whither is the vessel sailing ?
Wain. To the wars my ship is sailing,
To the bloody fields of battle,
Where the streams run scarlet-colored,
Where the paths are paved with bodies.
ANNI. Know I well the paths of battle;
Formerly my aged father
Often sounded war's alarum,
Often led the hosts to conquest;
In each ship a hundred rowers,
And in arms a thousand heroes,
Swords, and spears, and battle-axes;
Know I well the ship of battle.
Speak no longer fruitless falsehoods.
Whither sailest, Wainamoinen ?