LEGENDS OF IKU-TURSO (legend/myth)


Below is a fragment of Iku-Turso’s legend, the creature responsible for capturing Tsovinar.

From the ocean rose a giant,
Mighty Tursas, tall and hardy,
Pressed compactly all the grasses,
That the maidens had been raking,
When a fire within them kindles,
And the flames shot up to heaven,

Till the windows burned to ashes,
Only ashes now remaining,
Of the grasses raked together,
In the ashes of the windows,
Tender leaves the giant places,
In the leaves he plants an acorn,

From the acorn, quickly sprouting
Grows the oak-tree, tall and stately,
From the ground enriched by ashes
Newly raked by water-maidens;

Spread the oak-tree’s many branches,
Rounds itself a broad corona,
Raises it above the storm-clouds;

Far it stretches out its branches,
Stops the white-clouds in their courses,
With its branches hides the sunlight,
With its many leaves the moonbeans,
And the starlight dies in heaven;

Wainamoinen, brave and mighty,
Seizes quick the ater-monster,
Lifts him by his ears and questions:

“Iku-Turso, son of Old-age,
Why are that rising from the blue-sea?
Wherefore doest though leave thy castle,
Show thyself to the might heroes,
To the heroes of Wainola?”

Iko-Turso, son of Old-age,
Ocean monster, manifested
Neither pleasure, nor displeasure,
Was not in the least affrighted,
Did not give the hero answer.
Whereaupon the ancient minstrel,
Asked the second time the monster,
Urgently inquired a third time:

“Iku-Turso, son of Old-Age,
Why are rising from the waters,
Wherefore dost though leave the blue sea?

Iku-Turso gave his answer:
“For this cause I left my castle
Underneat the rolling billows:
Came I here with the intention
To destroy the Kalew-heroes,
And return the magic Sampo
To the people of Pohyola.

If that will restore my freedome,
Spare my life, from pain and sorrow,
I will quick retrace my journey,
Nevermore to show my visage
To the people of Wainola,
Never while the moonlight glimmers
On the hills of Kalevala!”

Thent he singer, Wainamoinen,
Freed the monster, Iku-Turso,
Sent him to his deep sea castles,
Spake these words to him departing:

“Iku-Turso, son of Old-Age,
Nevermore arise from ocean,
Nevermore let Northland-heroes
See thy face above the waters I

Nevermore has Iku-Turso
Risen to the ocean-level;
Never since have Northland sailors
Seen the head of this sea-monster.

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