The North in the written word is almost an insult to its being. Alas, this is all I have. And may I be forgiven for the lacking in my tone, the numbness of the letter and the blankness of the page.
Words are to be said with deep meaning, heartful understanding, and soulful imagining. Until then, say nothing.
I have felt ukko in the sky on a thunderous night belting the earth with his fiery spirit. I have known akka to rise from the earth gifting voice and song. Tuulikki has passed by my side as I walk down the street or in the forest with messages from a far; or when the wind blows she dances her spiral dance in the autumn leaves; round and round they go. Lumikki greets me when the snow falls or when the ice crystals gleam in the morning. Päivitär, with bright new hope.
Päivitär always dances on the brightest days and warmest afternoons. The golden day who brings new life and hope to all who are brave enough to face the fire. Only the false and the slaves cower from her in darkness, but the free can look upon her with open eyes and hands.
They tell me tales and sing me songs when I am ready to listen, or when I must listen. The signs are loud and clear.
Once the sun shone from the North-West, a double rainbow hung in the sky as gentle rain drops fell. What a joy it was when Onni came from overhead. All will be well and my heart was calm.
But it is not all joy, light and peace. Have you ever dug into the earth and felt the dirt between your fingers? There live the dark creatures, the Gods who live in the roots of all things. Where the spiders crawl, the worms burrow and where the land rumbles. This is only the surface.
The Newland is covered in rock, and the men are digging deep into the rock, creating caverns, secret passage ways and shelters for the uncertain times that always lie ahead. Here they dig, deep into the rock of Hell, the rock that the great ice revealed but could not shift. And here, the horned one resides.
Black as night he rises out of the earth, with eyes shining like diamond stars. On the full moon, when Kuutar calls the wolves and all the wild beasts out of forest. There the horned one waits by the Oratuomi with rope made from the hair of the dead. And if you let your thoughts wander too freely, he will tie you up, bare and naked as the day your were born. Here you will be at his mercy, limbs bound and no where to turn. With the horned one there is no choice but to submit. Down he will take you. Down into the centre of the earth where the pits of Helvetia burn. You will face him and give all to him to find your soul and once again be whole.
The unknown wait in the dark
As the piercing steam rises
As the steam rises
Vieras odotta pimeydessä
The warrior sits underground
The crack of the birch
As the steam rises
Vieras odotta pimeydessä
A stone cracks loud
And when he is done with you, will you dare to dance with the horned one in the moonlight? And now, how will he appear to you? A happy goat, a stoic elk, a nimble reindeer or the dark firey beast from the centre of the earth where the Lohikäärme still roam?
The Lohikäärme are still very much around, in the bellies of fume and rage. When there is nothing left but fear at the edge of nothing. The Lohikäärme will show their face when home is threatened. And to a Finn, there is no place like home. The Lohikäärme protect the land, they are Akka’s friends and companions. If you cross them, you cross her; you will feel the firey breath upon your face and sharpest teeth into your flesh. Their roots are deep, and green with jealously, guarding their diamonds, gems and most of all their children.
If you befriend the Lohikäärme, you can then find the balance in this land of bogs, lakes and birch trees. For the golden road of birch leaves comes around every autumn. Though the misguided cannot tell the leaves from the path.
One autumn day in Middle Forest, I walked with a friend in the rain, with great pines and birch trees over head. And they called and sang: the fae, the Menninkäinen, dancing in the rain, “come and dance” they sang “tule ja tansi, tule ja tansi”; alas, I felt not like dancing, but enjoyed their song anyway. We wandered aimlessly through Middle Forest, until our wandering lead us up to Nature’s Gate (Luonnon Porti). Where horses prance, leaves whisper and the magic flows. It is an unsuspecting spot where the Menninkäinen call.
This land, the Gods and the magical creatures haunt, taunt and dance. Some walk in peace or soar bravely in the skys. I will forever be at their mercy, as I walk the golden line of life. There is a knowing, a golden thread which guides my way, with warning signs on all sides — if I stray too far. I do not need others to tell me so, for I feel it inside as the Gods of the North walk with me, everyday, within the space between what is and what isn’t.
At times I know what will happen before it does, it is a rare, special and consistent feeling. From deep within the silence comes a message: be still, watch and wait. It is always the same message with the same feeling: be still, watch and wait. And so I do.