Kalevala : the Epic Poem of Finland — Complete eBook

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

RUNE XXXII.

KULLERVO AS A SHEPHERD.

Kullerwoinen, wizard-servant
Of the blacksmith, Ilmarinen,
Purchased slave from Untamoinen,
Magic son with sky-blue stockings.,
With a head of golden ringlets,
In his shoes of marten-leather,
Waiting little, asked the blacksmith,
Asked the host for work at morning,
In the evening asked the hostess,
These the words of Kullerwoinen: 
“Give me work at early morning,
In the evening, occupation,
Labor worthy of thy servant.” 
Then the wife of Ilmarinen,
Once the Maiden of the Rainbow,
Thinking long, and long debating,
How to give the youth employment,
How the purchased slave could labor;
Finally a shepherd made him,
Made him keeper of her pastures;
But the over-scornful hostess,
Baked a biscuit for the herdsman,
Baked a loaf of wondrous thickness,
Baked the lower-half of oat-meal,
And the upper-half of barley,
Baked a flint-stone in the centre,
Poured around it liquid butter,
Then she gave it to the shepherd,
Food to still the herdsman’s hunger;
Thus she gave the youth instructions: 
“Do not eat the bread in hunger,
Till the herd is in the woodlands!”
Then the wife of Ilmarinen
Sent her cattle to the pasture,
Thus addressing Kullerwoinen: 
“Drive the cows to yonder bowers,
To the birch-trees and the aspens,
That they there may feed and fatten,
Fill themselves with milk and butter,
In the open forest-pastures,
On the distant hills and mountains,
In the glens among the birch-trees,
In the lowlands with the aspens,
In the golden pine-tree forests,
In the thickets silver-laden. 
“Guard them, thou O kind Creator,
Shield them, omnipresent Ukko,
Shelter them from every danger,
And protect them from all evil,
That they may not want, nor wander
From the paths of peace and plenty. 
As at home Thou didst protect them
In the shelters and the hurdles,
Guard them now beneath the heavens,
Shelter them in woodland pastures,
That the herds may live and prosper
To ’the joy of Northland’s hostess,
And against the will of Lempo. 
“If my herdsman prove unworthy,
If the shepherd-maids seem evil,
Let the pastures be their shepherds,
Let the alders guard the cattle,
Make the birch-tree their protector,
Let the willow drive them homeward,
Ere the hostess go to seek them,
Ere the milkmaids wait and worry. 
Should the birch-tree not protect them,
Nor the aspen lend assistance,
Nor the linden be their keeper,
Nor the willow drive them homeward,
Wilt thou give them better herdsmen,
Let Creation’s beauteous daughters
Be their kindly shepherdesses. 
Thou hast many lovely maidens,
Many hundreds that obey thee,
In the Ether’s spacious circles,
Beauteous daughters of creation. 

Copyrights
Project Gutenberg
Kalevala : the Epic Poem of Finland — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook