Miero (English)

RIENA / ANATHEMA

I throw off sparks,
I tear from my tongue words as twisted as tree-roots.

I poke the fire of hatred with my words,
I hurl hate back at you.

My mood blackens,
blacker than the mind of any mortal.

My loathing drips blood,
my pain slashes, curses, drenches with pus.

The snakes also curse you, serpents of death –
oh, that hissing will enter your head…

The snakes also curse you, serpents of death –
even the snakes…

I throw off sparks,
I tear from my tongue words as twisted as tree-roots.

You crushed me underfoot, you evil betrayer.
You punish me with rage, you poisoned my mind.

So I heap blame on you, spit words from my mouth.
So I accuse you – pathetic worm that you are.

 

VALHE / THE LIE

Let me not hear your evil lie!
Let nothing echo but the shackles on tongues.
You have no liking for the one who could have pleased you.

Oh, I would curse your tongue,
put a spell on that sly body,
the one that seduced me, enchanted me.

I won’t be a fool any more, I’m not to be cheated,
I’m not a bird with feathers for plucking,
a crazy fool to be flattered or tempted.

There was milk and honey on your tongue,
you wanted to lull me, pacify me –
but there was poison in your black heart.

I lost my wits to your wiles.
It was a bare-faced lie that brought me to it –
and though there was laughter on my lips
there were tears in my heart.

I was weak, I swayed like a person who is sick,
utterly under the spell of desire.
I wouldn’t listen to anyone, wouldn’t obey.

But I won’t be a fool any more, I’m not to be cheated,
I’m not a bird with feathers for plucking,
a crazy fool to be flattered or tempted.

 

MATALEENA

Mataleena, that young maid,
that bitter and twisted young maid –
her heart is darkness,
a land where nothing came to good.

She’d had three baby boys,
three she’d given birth to:
three swaddled bairns
she’d had for her own.

Mataleena, that young maid,
bitter and twisted young maid –
her heart is darkness,
a memory of old evil.

One of them she set fire to.
He became a bright-glowing coal.
It was fire that lulled him to sleep,
flames that made moan for him.

The second she threw in the water,
held him under the waves.
It was the sea-swell that rocked him,
dark ocean that took him.

She dug a pit in the woods for the third,
laid him to sleep in a grove.
His cradle is birch-trees, swaying,
they watch over his everlasting sleep.

That’s what she did with her three baby boys,
the three she’d given birth to.

 

SYNTI / THE SIN

They gossip about it in the village –
that I run from man to man, playing my games.
They’ve been saying in the village
that I’ve slept in one cottage after another, in every cottage.

Let those who say it
take the sin of their saying upon them.
Those who say it –
may they have gripes-in-the-guts.

They gossip in the village
that I’ve had a hundred children, a hundred children, they say.
They say they know that I’ve rocked
a thousand children to sleep.

May the gossipmongers have their reward:
may they have serpents, may they have snakes in their cradles.
May they have lizard-foetuses.

May death eat them, death eat them, death eat up the males.
May pestilence kill, pestilence kill, pestilence kill the men.
They gossip in the village
that I eat men up with my eyes, with my eyes, they say.
They gossip in the village
that the men shield me, that their hands hide me.

Let those who say it
take the sin of their saying upon them.
Those who say it –
may they have gripes-in-the-guts.

May the gossipmongers have their reward:
may they have serpents, may they have snakes in their cradles.
May they have lizard-foetuses.

May death eat them, death eat them, death eat up the males.
May pestilence kill, pestilence kill, pestilence kill the men.
May none but death desire them,
only hell stretch out a hand to them.

 

MAARIA

Maaria, Maaria, from the abodes of the underworld,
from the dwellings of the dead – Maaria.

Maaria, upon these moors, upon these shores, permitted by earth –

On the stony path to the church, your mind blissful,
on the stony path, the path to the church. Hey –
though she has wings there, wings on her
on that stony path, the path to the church. Hey!

Maaria, Maaria, from the abodes of the underworld,
the dwellings of the dead, upon these shores –

There is longing – whom do you long for? Maaria,
your plaint is of blood upon these shores.

On the stony path to the church, your mind blissful,
on the stony path, the path to the church. Hey –
though she has wings there, wings on her
on that stony path, the path to the church. Hey!

She is no bird, no bird, no bird.
Oh no, no bird. The bronze bell is mute. No bird.

 
MIERO / THE OUTCAST

Rise up, oh day, rise higher and higher.
Oh – let sunrise banish the gray of night!

Far away is my mother,
the one who bore me. She lies on forest-mold,
in the lap of dim, far-off trees,
on the edge of a long cloud.

Oh dwelling of the underworld,
the sky is my grandfather
and the earth my grandmother.
Oh heaven, oh earth,
oh earth…

Rise up, oh day, rise higher and higher.
Oh – let sunrise banish the gray of

 

MIERONTIE / PATH OF THE OUTCAST

When the one who bore me disappeared,
my own mother – no more to be near me –
I was abandoned by my own dear kin,
my own brothers were strangers to me.

From my home I was banished,
my own kin drove me forth,
drove me away with birch-rods!
I was cast out to roam the sandy ways.

Wretch that I am I wandered, how I wandered,
hunger my companion, wasting away, wasting away.

A wretch, a wanderer of the moon, I moan, I moan my suffering –
a wretch without a home or fire to warm me.

Poor soul that I am I wandered, how I wandered,
hunger my companion, wasting away, wasting away.
I cry in the frosty night, all day long I cry.
Numbed by cold I whimper, blubber like a baby.

Where shall I go, where shall I travel?
Oh misery me, how far must I wander?

Split me, oh lightning!
Thunder-god, highest of gods, strike me!

 

MUSTAT KENGÄT / BLACK SHOES

The others were sitting down, they were joyful.
They were chatting to each other merrily,
not a care in the world.

And I sat down and cried, I just cried!
I was in a bad mood, feeling so low.

The others have black shoes, nice-looking boots,
while I clump around wearing wood,
clip-clop in shoes made of birch-bark.

The others all have fine clothes, so fine they are,
the others have capes sewn from silk, capes sewn from silk.

But I have a jacket all shabby and worn out.
I have a coat all fluff and threads.

What was I thinking of, those mad dreams of mine!
I thought it was mine for the taking ¬–
the love of a rich man, mine for the taking.

 

LUPAUS / THE PROMISE

I wander far from home, far from my own one,
far from home, far from my own one.

I have gone beyond the seas, beyond the seas.
From the countries where I travel
the winds wouldn’t reach my love in a day,
no bird fly there in two days.

We are promised to each other, I guess,
though no words were spoken.
And the world won’t keep us apart,
and the wide seas can’t quench our love.

I wander far from home,
spend weeks away in foreign lands.

It’s seldom we get together,
seldom we see each other.
The waves come between us,
the ocean’s expanse separates us.

So far from home, so far from my own one,
far from my own one, far from home.

 

LUMOTAR / THE ENCHANTRESS

I’m going to cook a man’s mind,
warm it up with fire, heat his desire.
I’m going to make men want me,
serve me every way they can.

So there’ll be no sleep for you at night
nor rest in the day.
You’ll do everything I want,
only what’s in my mind.

Burn, mind of man!
Let me set fire to your heart
so that you choose my body,
and worship me forever.

And you’ll want to be my darling,
my own dear loved one.
You’ll accept it – you’re my sweetheart,
you’ve fallen into my power.

I’ll make your feet rush to be near me,
make you bide in my heart.
I’ll tempt you to follow my wishes
and I’ll bend you to my will.

 

EERAMA

Eerama, old woman of the North
set tasks for those who sought her daughter’s hand:

“Plough a field of vipers,
turn over the serpent-ridden soil.
And you’ll have to forge the plough yourself
or Eerama won’t give her to you.”

Eerama, old woman of the North said:
“You’ll have to work for my daughter.”

“Bring me the Swan of Tuonela,
shoot that sweet bird of mercy.
And hunt the sacred elk on your skis.
If you don’t, my daughter isn’t for you.”

“Bring me the Swan of Tuonela,
shoot that sweet bird of mercy.
And hunt the sacred elk on your skis.”
If you don’t, Eerama says No.

 

VAITEN VALVOIN / I LAY AWAKE

Silently I lay awake beside you,
watched over you, all whiteness as you slept.

I looked at you, my lovely one, watched a long time.
Dearest, it was long I watched you.

Weeks you spent, years. And you were silent.
You closed your heart, blaming yourself without cause.
You held your fears within you.
You felt the unfairness, bore the burden of it.

My dear, I watched you, felt your pain. It grew darker with me –
a heavy load on our shoulders. We were silent, powerless.

Pain walked behind you, close at your heels.
In your struggle the pain grew numb.
You, Mercy, granted that life would fade,
that days would end

You who hide suffering hands, close tearless eyes.
And I hide suffering hands as the light brightens,
close tearless eyes as it brightens, silently.

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