Ukrainian Folk winter song for a warrior

So, I have a tradition here in this blog, once a year in the winter to record and post a folk song my grandma used to sing. This one is number three, and might be the last one. While I do know a few more dozen of Ukrainian carols and other winter songs, these three are the only ones that were quite different from the other ones. Well, come next winter we’ll see.

Here is the song itself:

I wrote about this particular type of winter songs (non-carol traditional songs) last year, so you might want to read about them here: https://msvarnyk.wordpress.com/2015/01/20/ukrainian-non-carol-winter-song/

So these were the songs that would be sung on the eve before Epiphany for all children and young people, pretty much whoever is not married yet, and for most of them the motive would have something to do with a problem or a situation that is not resolved by the efforts of your mother and father, and the siblings, until your beloved arrives, and then everything will work out. As I mentioned last year, mine was about me sitting in the apple tree and refusing to give an apple to anyone (since apparently I only have one, duh, it’s January), util my beloved comes and I give it to him. Ironically, of all my girl-cousins I’m the only one still “sitting in the tree”, so maybe I can blame the song for that, maybe if I got a better song (there were options of washing handkerchiefs on ice or watching the herd of oxen, instead of sitting in the tree, doing nothing, and being stingy), life would be different? Joking, of course.

This particular song would be sung to a boy, in our extended family it was usually my brother – he was the yongest, perhaps that is why he would get this one (though there might be other reasons also). It follows the same logic of listing the family members, except the boys family is unusual, and his love is unusual also, it is a song about a knight, a warrior . Here it what the song says:

The boy went into the mountains to fight.

(Chorus: )He is young himself, and his horse is black.

He was attacked by three robbers (or bandits).

They ask him: who is your father?

My father is the bright Moon.

They ask him: who is your mother?

My mother is the star in the sky.

They ask him: who is your beloved?

My beloved is the sabre on my side.

The song seems somewhat unfinished, and I remember asking: so what happened next? I got an answer that was overly pacifist and not particularly logical: oh, they let him go. The logical answer, that would follow the epic canons would be: he pulled his sabre out and killed them all, so that they could not trouble anyone any more. I’m not sure whether that particular pacifying answer was tailored to me, since I had periods in my childhood when I would not leave home without carrying all of the toy weapons I had, when I was five and a half in the kindergarten, apparently I tried to strangle a little rascal who stole my markers that were brought the other night by Saint Nicholas, he was lucky that the teacher heard his squeaking  somewhere in the corner where I was finishing him off, and I did not want to draw anything besides tanks on the ballet fields. So perhaps that answer was meant to curb my already overly-worrier-like nature.

Or maybe it was the self-preservation on the level of the whole family, and the whole nation also – after two wars, a house burned for political reasons, moving into Soviet territory, the exiles of family members, later participation in underground publishing of censored literature, and the typewriter that had to buried in the ground, being expelled from universities also for political reasons, and being regularly called in for KGB interrogations, that’s just a fraction of what my grandparents and parents had to live through, it would probably make you want to lay low and avoid confrontation. As a nation, we are just now learning, that sometimes you have to stand up and fight, because evil has to be fought and the evil ones have to be killed. We have avoided it for very long, we have repressed it, and indulged in delusions about “brotherly love”, which still surface from time to time. But we are becoming stronger, hopefully we will also remain human.

What remains is to wish all the warriors on all fronts, that their weapons are reliable, and that they are blessed and protected by the the sun, the mood, and the stars.

Advertisements

Щедрівка для воїна

Це тут третя і мабуть остання пісня різдвяно-йорданного циклу з серії “бабця співала”. Люблю її, бо вона інша ніж решта щедрівок, особлива. Серед всіх тих всіх, що бабця нам, тобто внукам, щедрувала, ця – єдина не тематизує очікування женячки.

Вона, звичайно, якась трохи ніби незакінчена, і я пам’ятаю як в дитинстві питала: і що далі було? Мені відповідали пацифічно і нелогічно: ну, що було, відпустили його певно, не хотіли з ним воювати. Не знаю, чи така відповідь була відображенням тодішнього психологічного стану – родинної історії двох воєн, спаленої хати на Лемківщині, переїзду в союз, вивезень родичів, потім самвидавів і закопаних друкарських машинок, вигнань з університету, постійних викликів в КГБ… Чи може може то була корекційна відповідь для мене особисто – в мене були такі періоди, що я виходила з дому не інакше як обвішана всіма своїми іграшковими зброями одночасно. В п’ять з половиною років мало не задушила якогось малолітнього рагуля, який вкрав в мене фломастери, що їх мені щойно приніс святий Миколай (добре що вихователька в садку почула його млявий писк десь в кутку, де я з ним розправлялася, і врятувала). Ну і малювати не хотіла нічого крім танчиків на полі битви. Крім того я могла легко ляпнути щось таке, що не можна було, і від чого потім могли би бути неприємності.

Очевидно, що набагато логічнішою відповіддю на моє питання про закінчення історії було б: витяг шабельку, і порубав розбійників на смерть, щоб вони більше ні на кого не нападали. Здається, ми нарешті починаємо вчитися жити цією логікою на рівні нації, хоч періодично ще досі проскакують слюні “примирення”, ну але це не дивно, бо це навмисне спродуковані і запущені мислевіруси.

Залишається побажати нашим воїнам на всіх фронтах надійної зброї, і хай їх благословлять своєю світлою увагою сонце, місяць і зорі.

Минулорічну щедрівку можна послухати тут: msvarnyk.wordpress.com/2015/01/20/uk…-winter-song/ або там само, де і цю – на саундклауді.

Eggs vs. Diss and other new year resolutions

Two days ago I got in mail a whole bunch of natural dyes that are normally used for fibres or fabrics (wool, silk, cotton), and I’m dying to try out dyeing eggs with them (did you like the pun, did you like the pun???). But then, on the other hand, there is the Damocles’ sword of the diss hanging over me, and if I dive into eggs, it’s never going to be finished, because eggs are so easy and fun, in fact, this is why I didn’t do any eggs last Easter season (but did sneak in two just before Christmas, because I wanted to make a gift).

So here’s the brilliant (or not) idea I’ve got: I read somewhere that one of the best ways to break out of procrastination cycles with overwhelming projects is to find an appealing way to reward yourself for the progress with something you really really like. So, I will try to use the eggs to facilitate the diss. That is, I will reward myself with making an egg or two only after having made some quantifiable progress with the diss – say, edited 10 more pages, or written 5 more new pages, or something like that. I’ll have to work out the numbers in the process, I guess…

I wonder whether this will actually work or not :). But I think the plan has a great potential.

I’ll probably also create a separate blog just to document my egg experiments.

Here are a chicken and a rhea egg I made two weeks ago, and did not show yet. The chicken (first photo) was the practice run on a brown egg for the rhea – the big pale yellow (second and third photo), hence almost the same pattern in both. The pattern on the chicken is almost 100% traditional (except the colors and colouring pattern), and in the rhea was slightly adjusted.

IMG_0163

IMG_0189 IMG_0174

Another resolution is to keep up the music – I’ve gotten a good amount of practice (actually better than anything I ever managed to do on my own without any “group projects” in a long time, or maybe ever) from mid September till the beginning of December. But next three months my work schedule is going to interfere a lot with the “morning practice” I had in the fall, so I wonder how that will work out.

Add to that the double workload (factually it will probably be even more than double) I have this term compared to the last term, and another lunchtime meditation program in the new company, and the conclusion is this: unless I only do these 5 things (work, diss, meditation, eggs, music) over the next three months, and absolutely no other distractions or side-projects, something will have to give, and since I can’t cut the necessary stuff (work, dyss and meditation programs), I would have to cut the fun and inspiring stuff (eggs and music).

So, Happy New Year resolutions! 🙂