Helen Chief Speaks Out about Mother Earth in Cree

Wise words in any language, but beautifully spoken here in Cree by Helen Chief of Island Lake, Saskatchewan, who very kindly agreed to let me post her video here, along with the translation of her cousin Celina Jones, and with word-for-word transcription in Cree (to help learners read along) by Solomon Ratt. The video was recorded in White Swan, Washington, and posted on Youtube by Rebecca Centeno in June of 2013.

My name is Helen Chief. I come from Island Lake in Saskatchewan, Canada [… in your language, cause that’s how you started it…]
kisiwîtinîwiskwîw niya nitisîyihkâson. My name is Kind Wind Woman.
ôtê ohci nâtakâm ôtê ê-ohtôhtêyân.êkotê nîstanân kahkiyaw kîkway ê-pimi-mâkwahihkawiyâhk anohc ôma kâ-kîsikâk. I come from way up north. And we are affected and  having a hard time here, today.
êkwa, kikâwînaw, kitaskînaw ê-kakwâtakihtât tahto-kîsikâw. Our Mother, Mother Earth is having a hard time every day.
nanâtohk ê-isi-mônâtihkâtiht mîna ê-pimi-manisamoht wîscakâsa nika-pim-ayitwân Being dug into in every way possible, even her hair is being cut, I will say.
êwka ôki mihcêt ôki otatoskêhâkanak kâ-mônatihkâtâcik ôta kikâwînawa There are so many of these workers that dig here on our Mother.
ê-misowanâcihtâcik kahkiyaw kîkwaynipiy, mîna pisiskîsa, mîna kahkiyaw kîkway kâ-pimohpikik ôta waskitaskamik. They are ruining everything,the water, the little animals, and all of everything that grows on our land.
maskihkiy, maskihkiya, êkwak-anihi ê-misowanâtahki. The medicine, all of the medicines, they are ruined.
mîna ôma kâ-itohtamak ôma âyi kâ-itohtamahk kiyânaw. And also, the air that we breathe,
kî-yôhtinâwak kâ-kî-yôtinâhastât kahkiyaw kîkway mîna ê-wî-misowanâcihtât ôma. The wind that used to blow on everything is ruined.
môniyâwiyiniw nika-itwân kitaskînaw. Those non-native people, are going to kill our land.
tânitî êkwa kicawâsimisinawak, kôsisiminawak,kôcâpâninawak êkâ cîskwa ôki ôta kâ-pimi-nôkosicik,tânitî ikwa ta-pimi-wâh-wîkicik?

kîkwây ka-pim-âpacitâcik?

Where do our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and the ones unborn yet,where are they going to live?

What are they going to use?

mîna nanâtohk ôhi masinahikana ôtê pîcinâwiw kâ-kî-masinahahkik,kâ-pâh-pîkonahkik. And also, all these papers (Treaties), that were made, they broke them.
êkosi mîna, kitawâsisimisinawak ôko kahkiyaw kîkway ê-pimi-misowanâcîhikocik. So then, our children are being killed by many things.
êwakw-anima kahkiyaw kîkway ka-pimi-nakinamahk, ka-pimi-wîcihâyahkok. That is what we have to stop and try to help them.
mîna ôhôta wâsakâsimowina nanâtohk isihcikêwina êwakoni kâwi ka-pim-ôtinamahk. And also the Round Dances and all the Ceremonies, those are what we have to go back to.
êkwa kipîkiskwêwininaw ôma ka-pim-âpacitâyahk. And our languages, we have to start using.
cikêmâ êwakw-ânima kâ-kî-miyikosiyahk kiyânaw. Those are what were given to us.
êwakw-ânima êkwa kâ-wî-ohci-kiskinwahamâkiyahk kitawâsimisinawak ôtê pêci-nîkân ka-pim-âpacihtâcik. Those are now what we have to teach our children, in the future, to be able to use.
âh, êkosi mâka. êkosi, hây. Ekosi Hiy Hiy.
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Travelling Exhibit on the Cree Language

CPLReposted from Kepin’s Cree Language Blog with thanks!

Travelling Exhibit on the Cree Language.

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National Aboriginal Languages Day 2015: ahkami-nêhiyawêtân

FredaToday in celebrating National Aboriginal Languages Day – I’m also thinking of Freda Ahenakew who made the Cree language her life’s work. The fourth anniversary of Freda’s passing is April 8th.

In honour of Freda, and in honour of the day, Solomon Ratt has permitted me to share this poem in multi-media format (scroll down past the whole poem to find the video link to Sol’s PowerPoint with audio):

 ahkami-nêhiyawêtân

ahkami-nêhiyawêtân
kipîkiskwêwininâhk astêw kinisitohtamowininaw

ahkami-nêhiyawêtân
kipîkiskwêwininâhk astêw kinisitawêyimitowininaw

ahkami-nêhiyawêtân
kipîkiskwêwininâhk astêw kipimâtisiwininaw

ahkami-nêhiyawêtân
kipîkiskwêwininâhk astêw kinêhiyâwiwininaw.

ᐊᐦᑲᒥ ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᑖᐣ

ᐊᐦᑲᒥ ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᑖᐣ
ᑭᐲᑭᐢᑵᐏᓂᓈᕽ ᐊᐢᑌᐤ ᑭᓂᓯᑐᐦᑕᒧᐏᓂᓇᐤ

ᐊᐦᑲᒥ ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᑖᐣ
ᑭᐲᑭᐢᑵᐏᓂᓈᕽ ᐊᐢᑌᐤ ᑭᓂᓯᑕᐍᔨᒥᑐᐏᓂᓇᐤ

ᐊᐦᑲᒥ ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᑖᐣ
ᑭᐲᑭᐢᐍᐏᓂᓈᕽ ᐊᐢᑌᐤ ᑭᐱᒫᑎᓯᐏᓂᓇᐤ

ᐊᐦᑲᒥ ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᑖᐣ
ᑭᐲᑭᐢᑵᐏᓂᓈᕽ ᐊᐢᑌw ᑭᓀᐦᐃᔮᐏᐏᓂᓇᐤ

Let’s keep on speaking Cree

Let’s keep on speaking Cree:
In our language is our understanding.

Let’s keep on speaking Cree;
In our language is our recognition of who we are.

Let’s keep on speaking Cree;
In our language is our life.

Let’s keep on speaking Cree;
In our language is our Cree essence.

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tāpitaw ta-kī-kakwē-miyo-kwayaskohtēyan / Walk in Balance and Beauty

kisteyihta

Honor the sacred. Honor the Earth, our mother. Honor the Elders. Honor all with whom we share the earth: four leggeds, two-leggeds, winged ones, swimmers, crawlers, plant and rock people. Walk in balance and beauty.

Gorgeous collaboration of photo and audio from Solomon Ratt, translation into Cree by Arok Wolvengrey, and expert vocabulary provided by Jean Okimāsis.

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Honouring the Buffalo

Screen Shot 2015-02-24 at 8.53.16 PM

Three websites with comments and previews of this new book from Judith Silverthorne, with Plains Cree translation by Randy Morin, and Cree-language editing provided by Arok Wolvengrey and Jean Okimâsis. Congratulations to all involved. Every new book in Cree is a gift we can all share!

Can’t wait to see a copy for myself!

http://www.ynwp.ca/index.php/catalogsearch/result/?q=Honouring

http://www.saskmade.ca/catalog/books/honouring-buffalo

http://judithsilverthorne.ca/honouring-the-buffalo-a-plains-cree-legend/

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A little love for Valentine’s Day

Three choices of Valentine’s greeting from Solomon Ratt:

  • miyo-sâkihitowin-kîsikanisik: Happy love day.
  • miyo-mitêhi-kîsikanisik – happy heart day
  • miyo-wîcimosiwi-kîsikanisik – happy sweetheart day.

From http://www.nehiyawewin.com/ (complete with audio and a cute kohkom!)
(In standard spelling, we would write kîcimos, to show the long vowel!)

https://vimeo.com/119284057

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 12.08.16 PM

And in lots of other languages. I didn’t see Cree, but the videos are awfully sweet.

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 11.59.00 AM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zvt4Eba_EJM

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Little You

For I Love to Read month, Edmonton Public Library features Dorothy Thunder and Mayor Don Iveson reading together in Cree and in English, Richard Van Camp’s Little You – with the wonderful illustrations of Julie Flett. Enjoy!

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