Hoz miä itken, hoz miä laulan

(Song of Sadness)

Madli Oras and choir

Download .mp3 file

In Ingrian

Hoz miä itken, hoz miä laulan –
ei miun päiväni parene,

ei miun päiväni parene,
ei miun itkuni alene.

En miä laula laulujani,
en ilo iloisijan,

miä vaan laulan lauzehija,
iloen suruisian.

Ei itku emolle kuulu,
suruja izolle kuulu.

Kaig miä poimin povveheni,
käärin käzivarrelleni,

käärin küünelet kerällä,
kerä vieredän vettee.

En miä sao kellekää,
en miä, kulda, kukukkaa.

vaa miä saov vaa ühellä,
üks sannoo üheksälle.

Ko tulloo kesoine aiga
ja se maalla marja-aiga,

siis mään metsää (miä) vaa marjaa,
siel miä kurdan kuuzipuill,

siel miä kurdan kuuzipuille
ja komille koivupuille.*

In English

Whether I weep, whether I sing—
My day will not get better,

My day will not get better,
My tears will not end.

I don’t sing my songs,
I don’t sing my joys,

I only sing my words,
And I sing my worries.

My weeping won’t reach my mother,
My sorrow won’t reach my father.

I gather all [the sorrow] to my bosom,
Wind it on my arm,

Wind the tears into a ball,
Roll the ball into the water.

I will tell no one,
I, the golden one, will not call,**

Will only tell one,
The one will tell nine.

When summer comes
And berries will ripen in the country,

Then I will pick berries in the forest,
There I will lament to fir trees,

There I will lament to fir trees
And beautiful birch trees.

* In the original recording, the lead singer sings: kuuzipuilla, koivupuilla.

** According to a less likely version — en miä kultaa kukukkaa ’I will not call gold’.

The singer is sad. Mother and father can’t hear her lament, but she can wind her words into a ball, roll the ball into the water and thus send messages to her relatives. In the summer, you can relieve your worries in the forest, under trees.

Ingrians were good at expressing sadness and sorrow in Kalevala-metric songs in a very poetic manner. Like laments, the lyrical songs give the singer a chance to express her emotions through traditional imagery.

As to the song here, the singers have told that it may have been sung while walking on the village street or while sitting on the riverbank—if there was a river nearby, its bank was the most favoured place where girls gathered in the evenings to sing.

T M Maria Vahter, Ropsu, and choir (Lauri and Aili Laiho-Simonsuuri 1937, ERA, Pl 116 B1).