Where Kull-Lina and Ull-Stina dwells

By Kalashnicore

kullor

You bind a wreath of guelder rose

and hangs it on your hair

You laugh at the moon and its bone white nose

that watches you from the air

Tonight will you dance at Svartrama lake

with long strides and short strides and fire and stake

Tonight you are welcomed by the mist, to dance

where Ull-Stina and Kull-Lina dwells

(trad.)

So it was told not to go to Svartrama Lake in the summer, if you where a man. The women became something other there. Once, in the beginning of time the men trying to get there to take their wives and sisters home where beaten up severely, and almost didn’t survive. There came sticks and canes flying in the air, chasing them down from the mountain. Or so it was told. 

So it was told not to cross Ull-Stina. Her kauk was loud and magical, and the animals did her bidding. If she was displeased with how you treated your cows, they would wander off and never come back. So it was told that Kull-Lina could make the milk go sour if she thought you ill will. So it was told that up at Svartrama moor the cows spoke with soft female voices to their caregivers. So it was told.

In early summer, Ull-Stina would kauk, early morning and before sunset. She kauked for three days. Her strong voice rolled down from Svartrama. It sent chills through the men and longing in the older women’s hearts. It was so the girls knew they would take all the cows up to Svartrama for the summer. They took the cows, and their belongings and went up there, all the miles to the fresh grass in the highland. At Svartrama Lake, Ull-Stina and Kull-Lina had their pastures. Well grown farmsteads nowadays, not the small dank pastures that was common elsewhere in these parts of the country. They had built them themselves, many years ago. Every year the girls helped them to improve some of the structures, to give back, and to learn to build and shape things themselves. Some of them had never held a hammer before, but after the first week, they picked it up with confidence.

The girls brought gifts from the village. It was pelts from the hunters, woven fabric from the grown women, that fondly remembered their summers at Svartrama, and other things the elders had decided would appease the women, so they didn’t curse them.

The girls spent two months at Svartrama pasture, learning to build, make butter, and cheese and kauk to call the cows in to get milked in sunrise and sundown. In the darkness they learned the old knowings, the things no one spoke aloud of. Things of pleasure of the body and how to make a man do your bidding. Or so the men gossiped in the village. The girls came back women from Svartrama. With straight backs and proud eyes. And damn the man that tried to hit a women he married. She would turn to Kull-Lina for help and his manhood would never rise again.

Ull-Stina and Kull-Lina was of the mountain. Of the lake, and of the moor. They were stronger than the roots of trees and stable as the foot of the mountain. The land would always prosper, if the villages kept sending their girls and cattle up to Svartrama Lake in the summers. So it was told. And so they did.

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