Rade Vujisic

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Devil`s glade

At the time when there was no radio, television, cinema, theatre and people were forced to gather in the evenings and amuse them selves in best way possible: with gusle, playing “goats”, telling various stories and making up most of them, composing different songs resembling their everyday life these stories were born and with every right we call them Priče sa sijela ( i.e. Rural gathering stories).
At the time, not long ago though, to make up the best (“greasiest”) story was considered a talent. This story mainly, regardless its reliability, seamed highly convincing to the audience and used to make them believe in it. Such stories were told for generations and occurred not only fun but also suggestive. That is how many of these Rural gathering stories were actually born but unfortunately most of them are forgotten and lost; they disappeared.
This is why I tried hard to put them down to paper , to rip them out of oblivion’s embrace and save them. I wrote them down the same way I heard them because they represent a vivid picture of the time they were born in. Life at the country side , which is now hard for us to imagine possible under such conditions: in savardak, shack , cottage, by the tallow-candle light or by the light torch, with scroll and oil-lamp, next to fireplace without electricity, when windows were not made of glass but sheep or rabbit skin was stretched instead, when people slept on mats, on fern and corn bedding still had its marks, it was life after all.

Gusle were the main link and connection in people’s conversations and gatherings. They were used not only to entertain and communicate but also to say myriad of vise things. Many songs that followed gusle playing prove this ; they had different scope: to lode, shame, criticize, give strength , compare, judge, laugh at . Of course, there were always gifted and wise men, and that is where this priceless treasure that wasn’t used well came from. In this collection we will present some of it. It will be only few of them; the ones I managed to find and grab from older members of our brotherhood before they have crossed to the other side. It is a shame that many of our wise men and writers did not pay attention to preserving folk creations and wisdoms. They were mostly concerned about recent and newer creations and have forgotten and buried the opus that was already created.
The truth is that one, as he gets older, keeps coming back to past because he feels as if it is a part of him and he goes through ancestries, he feels and recalls, and forces himself to grab at least the finest and the smallest part of a life that is already finished and gone so it could be given to his descendents to inherit, to help them imagine their ancestors’ lives and life of a past time. This feeling awoke in me as well. Quite late ,though , to succeed completely to make everything eternal by writing it down. What I did represents a single drop in the sea, but, as we say ” A sparrow in the hand
is better than a pigeon on the roof “
Most of this work has already been published in various newspapers and magazines such as: “Pobjeda”, while it had section called “Through Montenegro, following familiar and secret roads” , “ Unknown vicinity” , magazine “Odzivi” and many others, all signed by this author.

Rade Vujisic

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