Orpingalik

Magical atmosphere in Nuuksio today.

Silent woods, silent thoughts.

Thinking about forest, life, song, singer... I am currently writing a book and these words came to me today as I was going through some background material. The quote by Netsilik Inuit shaman and poet Orpingalik was written down by Knud Rasmussen during his 1921-24 excursions in the Arctic.


Songs are thoughts, sung with the breath when people are moved by great forces and ordinary speech no longer suffices. Man is moved just like the ice foe sailing here and there out in the current. His thoughts are driven by a flowing force when he feels joy, when he feels fear, when he feels sorrow. Thoughts can wash over hime like a flood, making his breath come in gasps and his heart throb. Something, like an abatement in the weather, will keep hime thawed up. And then it will happen that we, who always think we are small, will feel still smaller. And we will fear to use words. But it will happen that the words we need will come of themselves. When the words we want to use shoot up themselves - we get a new song.
— (ibid. p. 321) Orpingalik