Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hidden Treasures: Mahkalahke





STILLNESS AND SILENCE



INARI WALK

Lapland  2000

63.3 North, 30.95 East

Some words written during the week that I took the second photograph, back in 2000 BB (Before Blogging):

In Helsinki, I befriended a German Girl who told me:

"Finland is a disease. 

You must leave before you catch it

Or you will never recover."


But I had been told

"Lapland is so exotic, even for Finns."


So I travelled to the Arctic Circle.

What did I expect to find?


All day long, mist has lingered over this northern outpost.

From the window of Room 211 at the Inari hotel

I watch snow falling

Over the Inari branch of the Kuukkeli supermarket.

The only northern lights are

The orange-glowing street lamps

On the main road to Norway.

Downstairs, the seedy bar

Promises pizza buffet and Karaoke.

Here, the locals: mainly lonely men,

While away their northern nights

With talk of reindeer and fishing.


And yet I have been told

This is a special place,

With a fatal attraction that pulls people back:

Magnetic North.


Tomorrow, I will travel South

What do I hope to find?


There is a Sami word:

Mahkalahke.

It means:

To return to a place you once lived

In order to find

Something you’ve lost.


And I promise myself that this time I will.


really will...


I have only recently reposted both of these images but have decided to do so again because I found the above diary extract from my Lapland trip. There was a written posting accompanying the first image reposted above and that can be found here, but the second one...well, it was just one of those days when the language part of my brain had frozen with fear. The soundtrack to these photographs would be the remarkable music of Wimme Saari, particularly two songs entitled: Boaimmas (which means Rough Legged Buzzard) and Gierran (Enchantment). Wimme is a contemporary performer of the great Sami tradition of Yoiking and If only I knew how to embed music into my blog page, you could hear the incredible soundscapes that this man creates. He may not be well-known outside Scandinavia but he should, in my opinion, be a superstar.

My other Lapland images can be viewed here


I'd like to thank the lovely and talented Lula of Sailor and Lula Designs, for giving me this sweet award. Thank you so much Lula! I promise to pass this on (and the others I've been hanging onto) in the near future!

12 comments:

Anonova said...

That top photo makes me feel uneasy. I wouldn't want to go into that building!
Very atmospheric, both.

Seth said...

Both images are among my (many) favorite photographs on your blog. And the story is fascinating and so creatively told. Thank you!!

Tumble Fish Studio said...

I have to say Lumi, your art, your pieces, your words are so beautiful . . . so so beautiful it is hard for me to sometimes relate. Your experiences are so different, your art comes from such a deeper place than mine . . . it is hard for me to feel worthy to relate to it. I have nothing in my experience that I can draw upon to wrap my head around it. It feels like some place I have not earned the ticket to visit and yet I want to go someday. You make me stop, you make me be quiet and think hard and search and decipher. All of this is the best way I know to compliment you - you are from a deeper more beautiful place than me and I agonize over and celebrate and enjoy your place.

Poetic Artist said...

Wonderful post.
Katelen

La Dolce Vita said...

I am always just blown away by your work. thanks for sharing.

Lawendula said...

Wish you had posted these in winter, it would fit better (it was a really hot day), but besides all that, they are touching!
You can sense this loneliness and the cold, not far away from another icy rain and storm...brrrr

Jeb said...

I love the photos! Cool effects.

Sandra said...

Tumble Fish Studio couldn't have said it better...you, your art, your words, come from so deep within, a place I haven't visited before, don't know if I ever will, but desperately long for.
When I grow up, I want to be like you.

MrCachet said...

I look at the top photo, which I enjoy very much, and I think of the possible piles of paper that might be hiding in it. Of course, I look at every old building that I see in that manner, but that's what I see.

Thanks for the walk!

Alberta said...

I feel so much like Tumblefish does. Your creations touch me deeply. These are bleak, lonely ,and beautiful. "Mahkalahke," what a lovely concept.

Lani Gerity said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!!! Images and text!
And thank you so much for the award!
Hmmmm, now to consider who to pass it on to!

Ginny Gaskill said...

I liked the northern lights and your post is so discriptive.