Friday, March 07, 2014

Rain Language Part I - A Poem by Terry Glavin

I like to read this poem out loud because of the rhythm and sounds of the chinook.

This is about 1/8th of the whole poem, I will be posting it in chunks.  Terry wrote it in seven pieces.   Since I could not find a copy online I asked Terry if I could post it and he agreed.   The original is in the book "A Voice Great within us: The Story of Chinook" by Charles Lillard and Terry Glavin published by Transmontanus/New Star Books

The "English" sections are not only a translation but an integral part of the whole poem

Rain Language 

Yaka yiem halo kliminawhit,
     This is a true story
Waum illahie klip sun, kopa Byrne Oakut,
    On a late summer evening on Byrne Road
kimta tenas wahm snass chako,
    after a gentle summer rain, 
Spose hyack colley konmokst chikchik, Ford pe Chevrolet,
    in a race between a Ford and Chevrolet, 
spose Ford tolo kopa tenas-sitkum mile
    if the Ford won the the quarter mile
pe Ford man mamook klahwa,
    and the Ford guy slowed down
kopet cooley, yaka halo mamook fly
     soon enough to avoid going airborne
oakut opoots, 
   at the end of the road,
Ford, yaka skookum chikchik.
    then the Ford was the skookum car.
Nawitka, Ford skookum chichik  
     A right skookum car.

Yaka yiem halo kliminawhit.
     This is a true story.
Spose mika hiyu mamook,
     If you had a job
pe chickamin sun chako
     and it was pay day
pe mike halo mahkook lum kopa tillicums, 
     and you still didn't buy a round, 
mika mitlite cultus bastard.
     you were a cultus bastard.
Nawitka, cultus bastard.
     A right cultus bastard.
Saltchuk, yaka mitlite saltchuk,
     The oceans was the saltchuk,
klootchman kopa mika tillicum
     your buddy's girlfriend
yaka mitlite klootchman,
     was his klootchman,
pe kopa okoke oakut, lelang mitlite
     and this is how the language lingers
yukwa pe yahwa.
     here and there.
Yaka mitlite kopa tenas wawa
     It is in the little words
pe ole shantie.
     and old songs.

Hyas Tlakowa nika
     I am so happy
Spose steamboat klatawa yukwa
     When the steamboat arrives,
Tlonas nika cly
     I think I will weep
Spose steamboat klatawa.
     When the steamboat leaves.

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