Kirsten Bråten Berg “Heiemo Og Nykkjen” (Heiemo And Nykkjen) & Helene Bøksle – “Heiemo Og Nykkjen”.

Hey guys! 🙂

I’ve been planning to share this Norwegian folksong with you for ages, but somehow never did it in the end, so finally that’s what I’m doing today. This is one of the first Norwegian folk songs I’ve ever heard and instantly fell in love with it, the version I heard first was the one by Kirsten Braten Berg, and I just loved the harmonies in it, the way it sounded and just the general feel of it, even though I could understand barely anything out of it and it didn’t make too much sense. Usually if you can speak Swedish, you can understand Norwegian well enough that you can at least figure out the context, but my Swedish was only crawling at the time and even now I can’t really understand much out of it on my own, I guess because the lyrics are quite archaic.

Last year I also heard Helene Boksle’s versioon for the first time, Helene Boksle is a well-known Norwegian singer to me whom I like a whole lot and have shared a

Norwegian hymn

in her interpretation ages ago, so you may or may not recall her.

I really love both versions of this song, so, like I often do, I had a hard time deciding on one, and in the end chose to share both of them with you, as they are quite different from each other. Kirsten Braten Berg’s feels more raw, solely with the accompaniment of Ale Moler, and Helene’s is more rich and contemporary. Both are very expressive in their own, different ways.

The song is about a young girl called Heiemo – I couldn’t find any information on the origin of the name so it’s possible that it’s somehow changed and functions in a different form these days or fell out of use. Nykkjen is a creature in Norwegian, but also generally European folklore, also known as Neck, Nokk and lots of other similar things. It is some sort of a water sprite which “by default” has the form of a water-horse, but is also a shapeshifter, and it likes to lure people to the water with singing and music, quite like sirens, and then kill them. So this Nykkjen creature fell in love with Heiemo upon hearing her singing, and decided to kidnap her and then kill her. But things turned around and Heiemo courageously stabbed Nykkjen to death.

Below is the translation of this song that I found

here,

apparently written by a lady called Sheila Louise Wright.

 

– wake up you noble youngsters-

The Water spirit heard it, striding on the sea,

– Because you now have overslept –

Heiemo sang her poem, it was singing in the hillside

The Water spirit heard it, the pagan dog.

The Water spirit spoke to his helmsman:

“You steer my ship upon christian land!”

“I will go upon christian land,

the beautiful maid I will have.”

He then enters her house

with high hat and rosy cheek

The Water spirit danced and Heiemo sang her poem

it pleased all folks in the houses

“Now every one has to go to his own home,

Heiemo I bring with me on the ship.”

“Heiemo, Heiemo, quiet your wrath,

You should sleep on water spirit’s arm.”

She stabbed the water spirit in his chest,

the nail ran into the root of his heart.

“Here you lay water spirit, naked to raven and dog.

Still I have my singing need.”

 

 

Question of the day.

Do you ever talk to yourself, or sing?

My answer:

Oh yeah, I talk to myself a lot and in different languages. It’s genetic, as my Mum’s the same, so we say we have such rich inner lives they’re spilling out, but my Mum has it worse, because she often thinks so loud that she doesn’t even know she’s thinking aloud and doesn’t realise that she’s just said what she was thinking, which leads to weird situations, but she doesn’t even care. But then when someone happens to be around while she’s spilling out her mind unbeknownst to herself, she is either very surprised and thinks that the other person must be a telepath, or accuses them of eavesdropping. It also seems like she has the same problem when she goes running, she has earbuds on when running and always thinks about loads of things and often finds that people look at her in a strange way, so she thinks she must think aloud while running too. It’s quite strange that someone would be so unaware of it but it’s funny at least from the observer’s perspective. I try to have more control over what’s spilling out of me and in what circumstances, and I don’t even have to try too hard as I’m way too blocked to do that so spontaneously, unless I just don’t know that someone is around, or happen to be extremely deep in thoughts, and then sometimes weird situations happen to me too, in such cases, but that’s really rare. I also talk to Misha and so if anyone ever happens to overhear something they also often assume I’m talking to myself. But, to avoid weird situations, since I can’t always know for 100% if someone is lurking around, and to practice my languages, I prefer to speak in other languages than Polish when talking to myself. And so my default language for talking to myself these days is ENglish, but I also talk quite a lot in Swedish and swear in Finnish. I also routinely have discussions with people on the other end when for example listening to something, like a YouTube video, a radio programme, whatever, even when reading things sometimes on the Internet but with speech synthesis, not in Braille, the more engrossing it is for me the more likely I am to do that, and voice my opinions, regardless of that the people on the other side are not going to hear them. With this I don’t even restrict myself so very much to when other people in my surroundings can’t hear it. 😀 Sofi picked it up from me and she also has discussions like that with her favourite YouTubers, for example, of which she has many.

I also sing to myself sometimes but it’s mostly in specific situations. I often sing for Misha when we are in my room. I seriously don’t know, perhaps it’s just me being megalomanic or something (although I don’t think I sing that extremely brilliantly, I just have musical hearing and can sing in tune and that’s it), but to me it looks like he likes when I do that and he relaxes himself and is listening very intently, so even if it’s just an impression, I typically do that when he’s going to sleep or when we’re having a cuddle time, he needs that sometimes, usually after a long time of being on his own, he’ll come and want to be petted and cuddled, and then I sing him to sleep, or when I have a feeling he’s sad or something’s wrong. I seriously think Misha’s not indifferent to music, and not only because he gets scared by very loud music. I also sing when I’m in desperate need for some background noise because of the sensory anxiety and there’s no other way of getting it. It only works so-so, but so-so is always more than nothing. And sometimes I just sing when I feel like it and when I’m alone but that’s pretty rare, I used to do it more.

You? 🙂

Question of the day.

Hi people! 🙂

When was the first time you remember feeling accomplished about something?

My answer:

Well, I guess I don’t remember which one could be the first time… I used to take part in many song competitions and such as a small child, so maybe something in relation to this. I especially liked our local song contest, where I competed with children from a special needs school in a neighbouring town, who were all multiply disabled often including intellectual disability, in contrast to me as I have only one disability per se, and I always won those contests, which wasn’t difficult for me at all, and I guess it wasn’t even that very fair as the jury were kinda biased towards me, haha, so not much challenge at all. So I always came back home from there with a big basket of sweets and we’d have a month or so of devouring horrendous amounts of them every day with Olek. Although now I wonder why they actually got me in there and then always made me a winner whether rightly or not rather than give more chances to the children at that school, and not make them compete with someone who had completely different kind of difficulties than them, I guess some people, even those in the field of disabilities, still think that a disability is just a disability and it doesn’t matter if you’re using a wheelchair, are blind, mentally ill or having a rare disease, it’s all the same for them, which is stupid. At least not all people are like this nowadays.

What’s the first accomplishment that you can remember? 🙂