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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 393 pages of information about Kalevala .

RUNE XXVI.

ORIGIN OF THE SERPENT.

Ahti, living on the island,
Near the Kauko-point and harbor,
Plowed his fields for rye and barley,
Furrowed his extensive pastures,
Heard with quickened ears an uproar,
Heard the village in commotion,
Heard a noise along the sea-shore,
Heard the foot-steps on the ice-plain,
Heard the rattle of the sledges;
Quick his mind divined the reason,
Knew it was Pohyola’s wedding,
Wedding of the Rainbow-virgin. 
Quick he stopped in disappointment,
Shook his sable locks in envy,
Turned his hero-head in anger,
While the scarlet blood ceased flowing
Through his pallid face and temples;
Ceased his plowing and his sowing,
On the field he left the furrows,
On his steed he lightly mounted,
Straightway galloped fleetly homeward
To his well-beloved mother,
To his mother old and golden,
Gave his mother these directions,
These the words of Lemminkainen: 
“My beloved, faithful mother,
Quickly bring me beer and viands,
Bring me food for I am hungry,
Food and drink for me abundant,
Have my bath-room quickly heated,
Quickly set the room in order,
That I may refresh my body,
Dress myself in hero-raiment.” 
Lemminkainen’s aged mother
Brings her hero food in plenty,
Beer and viands for the hungry,
For her thirsting son and hero;
Quick she heats the ancient bath-room,
Quickly sets his bath in order. 
Then the reckless Lemminkainen
Ate his meat with beer inspiring,
Hastened to his bath awaiting;
Only was the bullfinch bathing,
With the many-colored bunting;
Quick the hero laved his temples,
Laved himself to flaxen whiteness,
Quick returning to his mother,
Spake in haste the words that follow: 
“My beloved, helpful mother,
Go at once to yonder mountain,
To the store-house on the hill-top,
Bring my vest of finest texture,
Bring my hero-coat of purple,
Bring my suit of magic colors,
Thus to make me look attractive,
Thus to robe myself in beauty.” 
First the ancient mother asked him,
Asked her son this simple question: 
“Whither dost thou go, my hero? 
Dost thou go to hunt the roebuck,
Chase the lynx upon the mountains,
Shoot the squirrel in the woodlands?”
Spake the reckless Lemminkainen,
Also known as Kaukomieli: 
“Worthy mother of my being,
Go I not to hunt the roebuck,
Chase the lynx upon the mountains,
Shoot the squirrel on the tree-tops;
I am going to Pohyola,
To the feasting of her people. 
Bring at once my purple vestments,
Straightway bring my nuptial outfit,
Let me don it for the marriage
Of the maiden of the Northland.” 
But the ancient dame dissented,
And the wife forebade the husband;
Two of all the best of heroes,
Three of nature’s fairest daughters,

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