kimamihcihinân, onîhithawasinahikîw! / Congratulations, Solomon Ratt!

sol-books

Congratulations to Solomon Ratt whose non-stop work ethic has now produced a new volume of funny stories – nîhithaw âcimowinaWoods Cree Stories – which he has written in his Native dialect of Woods Cree!

This volume is the fourth publication in the the 4th volume in the First Nations Language Readers series prepared by the University of Regina Press.

http://www.uofrpress.ca/publications/Woods-Cree-Stories/

I wonder if we can persuade him to give us some audio files, so we can all read along!

sol-spread

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Making Introductions – Two Dialogues and Vocabulary from Solomon Ratt

Solomon Ratt: Making Introductions, Dialogue 1:

A: tânisi. A: Hello, how are you.
B: namôya nânitaw. kiya mâka. B: Fine. How about you?
A: pêyakwan. Solomon nitisiyihkâson. kiya mâka, tânisi kitisiyihkâson ? A: The same. My name is Solomon. How about you, what’s your name?
B: George nitisiyihkâson. B: My name is George.
A: kayahtê âmaciwîspimowinihk ohci niya. kiya mâka, tânitê ohci kiya kayahtê? A: I am from Stanley Mission originally. How about you, where are you from originally?
B: oskana kâ-asastêki ohci niya, êkota mina mêkwâc niwîkin. kiya mâka, tânitê mêkwâc kiwîkin? B: I am from Regina, I also live there now. How about you, where do you live now? 
A: oskana kâ-asastêki mêkwâc nîsta niwîkin. okiskinwahamâkêw niya, kiya mâka, okiskinwahamâkêw cî kîsta? A: I live in Regina now too. I am a teacher, how about you, are you a teacher too?
B: namôya, okiskinwahamâkan niya! B: No, I am a student!

 

Making Introductions, Dialogue 2:

  1. tânisi?
    Hello, how are you?
ninêstosin.
I am tired.
  1. tânisi kitisiyihkâson
    What is your name?
pînciman nitisiyihkâson.
My name is Benjamin.
  1. tânitahtopiponêyan?
    How old are you?
nîstanaw nikotwâsosâp nititahtopiponân.
I am 26 years old.
  1. tânitê ohci kiya kayahtê?
    Where are you from originally?
kistapinânihk ohci niya kayahtê.
I am originally from Prince Albert.
  1. tânitê kikî-nihtâwîkin?Where were you born?
kistapinânihk nikî-nihtâwîkin.
I was born in Prince Albert.
  1. tânisi kî-ihkin kâ-kî-nihtâwîkiyan?
    What season were you born in?
kî-pipon.
It was winter
  1. tânitê kikî-pê-ohpikin?
    Where were you raised?
kistapinânihk nikî-pê-ohpikin.
I came to be raised in Prince Albert.
  1. tânitê kikî-pê-kiskinwahamâkosin?
    Where did you go to school?
mînisihk nikî-pê-kiskinwahamâkosin.
I went to school in Saskatoon.
  1. tânitê mêkwâc kiwîkin?
    Where do you live now?
oskana kâ-asastêki mêkwâc niwîkin.
I live in Regina now.
  1. nîpin cî mêkwâc?
    Is it summer now?
namôya, pipon.
No, it is fall.

Making Introductions, Vocabulary

êkota there
kayahtê originally
kîsta you too
kitisiyihkâson your name is
kiwîkin you live
kiya you
kiya mâka? How about you?
mâka but
mêkwâc now
mîna also/too
namôya no
namôya nânitaw fine
nânitaw about
nîsta me too
nitisiyihkâson my name is
niwîkin I live/reside
niya I/me
ohci from
okiskinwahamâkan a student
okiskinwahamâkêw a teacher
pêyakwan the same
tânisi hello, how are you
tânitê where
Posted in Lesson, Reading Practice, Vocabulary | Leave a comment

Little Hospital – A personal story from Solomon Ratt

nicahkosîwikamikos / ᓂᒐᐦᑯᓰᐏᑲᒥᑯᐢ / My Little Hospital

Salamô âcimow

Little HospitalAnother original story written by Solomon Ratt in his own th-dialect Woods Cree (and translated into English).

Click the audio link to listen and read along!

[1] iskwîyânihk kâ-kî-kiyokawak nikâwîpan nikî-âcimostâk ispî kâ-kî-nihtâwîkiwak:

ᐃᐢᑮᐧᔮᓂᕁ  ᑳ ᑮ ᑭᔪᑲᐊᐧᐠ  ᓂᑳᐄᐧᐸᐣ  ᓂᑮ ᐋᒋᒧᐢᑖᐠ  ᐃᐢᐲ  ᑳ ᑮ ᓂᐦᑖᐄᐧᑭᐊᐧᐠ

The last time I visited my late mother she told me the story of the time I was born:

[2] ikospî îsa î-kî-mikiskâk, kaskatinowipîsim î-kî-akimiht, kâ-kî-pimôtîhocik ninîkihikwak ikwa otôtîmiwâwa, wanihikîskanâhk î-kî-itôtîhocik. tâwic ôma îsa î-kî-otâpahastimwîcik ispî kâ-kî-ati-âhkosit nikâwîpan, athisk îsa ikospî î-kî-kikiskawâwasot, nîtha ôma îsa ikota î-kî-kikiskawit. wihtamowîw nohtâwîpana î-wî-âhkosit, ocâpânâskosihk îsa î-kî-pôsit îskwâ nohtâwîpan. î-pimitisahastimwît.

ᐃᑯᐢᐲ  ᐄᓴ  ᐄ ᑮ ᒥᑭᐢᑳᐠ,  ᑲᐢᑲᑎᓄᐃᐧᐲᓯᒼ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐊᑭᒥᐦᐟ,  ᑳ ᑮ ᐱᒨᑏᐦᐅᒋᐠ  ᓂᓃᑭᐦᐃᑲᐧᐠ  ᐃᑲᐧ  ᐅᑑᑏᒥᐋᐧᐊᐧ,  ᐊᐧᓂᐦᐃᑮᐢᑲᓈᕁ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐃᑑᑏᐦᐅᒋᐠ᙮  ᑖᐃᐧᐨ  ᐆᒪ  ᐄᓴ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐅᑖᐸᐦᐊᐢᑎᒦᐧᒋᐠ  ᐃᐢᐲ  ᑳ ᑮ ᐊᑎ ᐋᐦᑯᓯᐟ  ᓂᑳᐄᐧᐸᐣ,  ᐊᐟᐦᐃᐢᐠ  ᐄᓴ  ᐃᑯᐢᐲ  ᐄ ᑮ ᑭᑭᐢᑲᐋᐧᐊᐧᓱᐟ,  ᓃᐟᐦᐊ  ᐆᒪ  ᐄᓴ  ᐃᑯᑕ  ᐄ ᑮ ᑭᑭᐢᑲᐃᐧᐟ᙮  ᐃᐧᐦᑕᒧᐄᐧᐤ  ᓄᐦᑖᐄᐧᐸᓇ  ᐄ ᐄᐧ ᐋᐦᑯᓯᐟ,  ᐅᒑᐹᓈᐢᑯᓯᕁ  ᐄᓴ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐴᓯᐟ  ᐄᐢᑳᐧ  ᓄᐦᑖᐄᐧᐸᐣ᙮  ᐄ ᐱᒥᑎᓴᐦᐊᐢᑎᒦᐧᐟ᙮

At that time it was freeze-up, during the Freeze up Moon (November) when my parents and their friends were travelling, they were travelling to the trapline. They were way out in the lake, driving a dog team when my late mother began labour, as she was with child, it was me she was carrying. She told my late father that she was going into labour, she was in the dogsled while my late father was driving the dog team. 

[3]  sîmâk tîpwâtîw owîcîwâkana nohtâwîpan, î-wihtamowât î-wî-âhkosithit nikâwîpana. tâpwî-pokâni nâtakâm isi-otâpahastimwîwak. ikotî nîtî kîwîtinohk, sîpânakiciwanohk kâ-kî-ati-kipihcîcik. wâsakâm ikota î-kî-ati-mânokîcik.

ᓰᒫᐠ  ᑏᐹᐧᑏᐤ  ᐅᐄᐧᒌᐋᐧᑲᓇ  ᓄᐦᑖᐄᐧᐸᐣ,  ᐄ ᐃᐧᐦᑕᒧᐋᐧᐟ  ᐄ ᐄᐧ ᐋᐦᑯᓯᐟᐦᐃᐟ  ᓂᑳᐄᐧᐸᓇ᙮  ᑖᐲᐧ ᐳᑳᓂ  ᓈᑕᑳᒼ  ᐃᓯ ᐅᑖᐸᐦᐊᐢᑎᒦᐧᐊᐧᐠ᙮  ᐃᑯᑏ  ᓃᑏ  ᑮᐄᐧᑎᓄᐦᐠ,  ᓰᐹᓇᑭᒋᐊᐧᓄᕁ  ᑳ ᑮ ᐊᑎ ᑭᐱᐦᒌᒋᐠ᙮  ᐋᐧᓴᑳᒼ  ᐃᑯᑕ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐊᑎ ᒫᓄᑮᒋᐠ᙮

Right away my late father calls his companions telling them that my late mother was going into labour. Immediately they drove their dog teams to shore. It was there to the north at the place where the current goes underground where they stopped. It was there they set up camp.

[4] wahway, kwayask îsa kî-sôhki-atoskîwak aniki nâpîwak, î-kîskatahahtikwîcik ,î-wî-wâskahikanîstamawâcik nikâwîpana ita kita-nihtâwîkiwak. miscikosa î-kî-apahkwêcik kisik mîna maskîkwa î-tahkohtastâcik apahkwânihk. namôtha kinwîsk ispî kâ-kîsi-wâskahikanihkîcik ispî kâ-pî-nihtâwîkiyân.

ᓰᒫᐠ  ᑏᐹᐧᑏᐤ  ᐅᐄᐧᒌᐋᐧᑲᓇ  ᓄᐦᑖᐄᐧᐸᐣ,  ᐄ ᐃᐧᐦᑕᒧᐋᐧᐟ  ᐄ ᐄᐧ ᐋᐦᑯᓯᐟᐦᐃᐟ  ᓂᑳᐄᐧᐸᓇ᙮  ᑖᐲᐧ ᐳᑳᓂ  ᓈᑕᑳᒼ  ᐃᓯ ᐅᑖᐸᐦᐊᐢᑎᒦᐧᐊᐧᐠ᙮  ᐃᑯᑏ  ᓃᑏ  ᑮᐄᐧᑎᓄᐦᐠ,  ᓰᐹᓇᑭᒋᐊᐧᓄᕁ  ᑳ ᑮ ᐊᑎ ᑭᐱᐦᒌᒋᐠ᙮  ᐋᐧᓴᑳᒼ  ᐃᑯᑕ  ᐄ ᑮ ᐊᑎ ᒫᓄᑮᒋᐠ᙮

Wow, these men worked very hard, cutting down trees as they were set on building a cabin for my late mother where I would be born. They used small trees for the roof and put moss on top for the roof. Not long after they were finished building the cabin I came to be born.

[6] nikâwîpan nikî-itik: “î-kî-âhkosîwikamikohkâkawiyan ikospî.”

ᓂᑳᐄᐧᐸᐣ  ᓂᑮ ᐃᑎᐠ:  ᐄ ᑮ ᐋᐦᑯᓰᐃᐧᑲᒥᑯᐦᑳᑲᐃᐧᔭᐣ  ᐃᑯᐢᐲ

My late mother told me: “They had built a hospital for you at that time.”

WORD LIST

âcimostaw ᐋᒋᒧᐢᑕᐤ tell someone a story (VTA)
âhkosi ᐋᐦᑯᓯ ready to give birth (VAI)
âhkosîwikamikohkâkawi ᐋᐦᑯᓰᐏᑲᒥᑯᐦᑳᑲᐏ have a hospital made for someone (VAI)
akim ᐊᑭᒼ count it (VTT)
aniki ᐊᓂᑭ those
apahkwânihk ᐊᐸᐦᒁᓂᕽ on the roof
apahkwê ᐊᐸᐦᑵ shingle (VAI)
athisk ᐊᖨᐢᐠ because
ati ᐊᑎ begin (PV)
atoskî ᐊᑐᐢᑮ work (VAI)
ikospî ᐃᑯᐢᐲ at that time
ikota ᐃᑯᑕ there
ikota ᐃᑯᑕ there
ikotî nîtî kîwîtinohk ᐃᑯᑏ   ᓃᑏ ᑮᐑᑎᓄᕽ there, to the north
ikwa ᐃᑿ and
îsa ᐄᓴ apparently
îskwâ ᐄᐢᒁ while
iskwîyânihk ᐃᐢᑹᔮᓂᕽ the last time
ispî ᐃᐢᐲ when
itôtîho ᐃᑑᑏᐦᐅ travel there (VAI)
kaskatinowipîsim ᑲᐢᑲᑎᓄᐏᐲᓯᒼ November
kikiskaw ᑭᑭᐢᑲᐤ wear it (VTA)
kikiskawâwaso ᑭᑭᐢᑲᐚᐘᓱ be withchild (VAI)
kipihcî ᑭᐱᐦᒌ stop
kîsi ᑮᓯ finish (PV)
kisik mîna ᑭᓯᐠ   ᒦᓇ also/too
kîskatahahtikwî ᑮᐢᑲᑕᐦᐊᐦᑎᑹ cut trees (VAI)
kiyokaw ᑭᔪᑲᐤ visit someone (VTA)
kwayask ᑿᔭᐢᐠ extremely
mânokî ᒫᓄᑮ pitch camp
maskîkwa ᒪᐢᑮᑿ moss
mikiskâw ᒥᑭᐢᑳᐤ ice freeze up time
miscikosa ᒥᐢᒋᑯᓴ small trees (sticks)
namôtha kinwîsk ᓇᒨᖬ   ᑭᣉᐢᐠ not long
nâpîw ᓈᐲᐤ man
nâtakâm ᓈᑕᑳᒼ at the shore
nicahkosîwikamikos ᓂᒐᐦᑯᓰᐏᑲᒥᑯᐢ my small hospital
nihtâwîki ᓂᐦᑖᐑᑭ be born (VAI)
nikâwîpan ᓂᑳᐑᐸᐣ my late mother
nikî-itik ᓂᑮ ᐃᑎᐠ she/he said to me
ninîkihikwak ᓂᓃᑭᐦᐃᑿᐠ my parents
nîtha ᓃᖬ me
nohtâwîpan ᓄᐦᑖᐑᐸᐣ my late father
ocâpânâskosihk ᐅᒑᐹᓈᐢᑯᓯᕽ in the toboggan
ôma îsa ᐆᒪ ᐄᓴ thus apparently
otâpahastimwî ᐅᑖᐸᐦᐊᐢᑎᒱ drive a dog team (VAI)
otôtîmiwâwa ᐅᑑᑏᒥᐚᐘ their friends
owîcîwâkana ᐅᐑᒌᐚᑲᓇ his companions
come (PV)
pimitisahastimwî ᐱᒥᑎᓴᐦᐊᐢᑎᒱ follow the dogs (VAI)
pimôtîho ᐱᒨᑏᐦᐅ travel (VAI)
pôsi ᐴᓯ get on board (VAI)
sîmâk ᓰᒫᐠ right away
sîpânakiciwanohk ᓰᐹᓇᑭᒋᐘᓄᕽ place where current goes under
sôhki ᓲᐦᑭ hard
tahkohtastâ ᑕᐦᑯᐦᑕᐢᑖ set on top (VAI)
tâpwî-pokâni ᑖᐿ ᐳᑳᓂ right away
tâwic ᑖᐏᐨ far from shore
tîpwâs ᑏᑇᐢ call out to someone (VTA)
wahway ᐘᐦᐘᕀ wow
wanihikîskanâhk ᐘᓂᐦᐃᑮᐢᑲᓈᕽ at the trap-line
wâsakâm ᐚᓴᑳᒼ along the shore
wâskahikanîstamaw ᐚᐢᑲᐦᐃᑲᓃᐢᑕᒪᐤ make a house for someone (VTA)
wihtamow ᐏᐦᑕᒧᐤ tell him/her (VTA)
Posted in Original Story, Reading Practice | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Blown up, and 21 meters down, Buffalo Child Stone is sacred as ever.

This is my late father Wilfred Tootoosis, Cree Assiniboine (Nakota) standing in front of Mistassini. This big rock was blown up by the Saskatchewan Government in the 1960s despite a heroic effort by First Nations (including my late father and family friend Ms Buffy St Marie) and non-First Nations who fundraised so that the rock could be moved to a safe place. However, the Government proceeded to blow it up so that it wouldn’t be in the way as the Gardiner Dam was being built. My Dad took several dancers from Poundmaker and Little Pine to do one last ceremonial at and for Mistassini prior to it being blown up.

This is my late father Wilfred Tootoosis, Cree Assiniboine (Nakota) standing in front of Mistassini. This big rock was blown up by the Saskatchewan Government in the 1960s despite a heroic effort by First Nations (including my late father and family friend Ms Buffy St Marie) and non-First Nations who fundraised so that the rock could be moved to a safe place. However, the Government proceeded to blow it up so that it wouldn’t be in the way as the Gardiner Dam was being built. My Dad took several dancers from Poundmaker and Little Pine to do one last ceremonial at and for Mistassini prior to it being blown up.

From CBC’s As It Happens, September 5th, 2014 (note that proper standard spelling of the rock’s name is mistasiniy):

Saskatoon-based diver, Steven Thair is the first person in nearly 50 years to lay eyes on what remains of an important First Nations’ sacred site. For hundreds of years, the site – a giant boulder known in Cree as Mastaseni – marked a sacred meeting place in southern Saskatchewan. In 1966, government workers blew it up. It stood in the path of a man-made lake that was to be created by a dam.

Read more, or listen to the original interview:
http://www.cbc.ca/asithappens/features/2014/09/05/mastaseni-visit/

News about the find appeared in Indian Country Today and the Saskatoon Star Phoenix, and the Phoenix even includes Barry Ahenakew’s telling of the story of Buffalo Child Stone.

http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2014/08/27/remnants-sacred-rock-destroyed-60s-discovered-underwater-156614

http://www.thestarphoenix.com/Remnants+sacred+rock+located+Lake+Diefenbaker/10152559/story.html

The image on the right is of the rock before Lake Diefenbaker – provided by Tyrone Tootoosis, who was part of the diver’s search team. Tyrone’s photo collection of Saskatchewan Sacred Sites can be seen at http://creeliteracy.org/2014/04/28/cree-sacred-sites-tyrone-tootoosis/#jp-carousel-2134

BUFFALO CHILD STONE

What follows is the story of Buffalo Child Stone, as told by Barry Ahenakew to Star-Phoenix reporter Hannah Spray, about the big rock shaped like a buffalo that sat in the Qu’Appelle Valley before it was blown up in 1966. There are many longer, more detailed versions, Ahenakew said, but this is the heart of the story:

“For us, even though it’s underwater and parts of it are underwater, the spirit of it is still there, the spirit of the buffalo child, the buffalo child that was brought up by buffalo, raised by buffalo, as a child that was lost on the Prairies a long time ago as a group of people travelled. He thought he was a buffalo. He didn’t realize until he got bigger and he seen a reflection of himself as they were drinking water, that he looked a lot different than the buffalo. Using buffalo talk, he asked his father how come he looked so different. His father told him that he was actually a human being they had raised from the young, from being a young child, they raised him as a buffalo, they had found him and raised him as a buffalo.

With that discontent he had, his father told him you’re free to go if you want to look for your human being relatives, go ahead. That’s what he did. He left and he journeyed out and he found people. He couldn’t talk Plains Cree, though, so he had a hard time adapting to learning the language, but everybody spoke it so it didn’t take him too long to learn Plains Cree. He wasn’t very happy a lot of times, seeing all the buffalo hides and the buffalo meat. He’d never eat the buffalo, his brothers and sisters, his relatives.

After a while, he did have a family with the people, he had children and offspring, but he decided to leave and join the buffalo again. That’s when, later on, he turned into a buffalo, an actual buffalo. And he turned after that into a stone of the sitting buffalo, and that’s the stone that was there.

That’s a sacred story of the Cree. It goes a long time into the past.”

 

 

 

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Regifting, belatedly: A Canada Day gift from apihtawikosisan

Screen Shot 2014-08-29 at 9.51.00 AMLawyer/Activist/Educator Chelsea Vowel (originally from northern Alberta, now living in Montreal)  created a social justice video game – with Plains Cree language and cultural content, and a healthy dose of sardonic wit – that she launched on her apihtawikosisan.com blog as a Canada Day gift for everyone.

In the game, you are a Cree girl, sâkowêw, and you need to gather land defenders to help block Enkoch Industries from tearing up the Sundance field.

I haven’t played myself (so far it’s only available for PC, not Mac), but I love the Ad Astra Comix review (linked below, including Chelsea’s comments in response):

http://adastracomix.com/2014/07/23/colonialism-bytes-a-review-of-idle-no-more-blockade/

Chelsea’s initial post about the game:

http://apihtawikosisan.com/2014/07/a-present-for-canada-day/

Some video links Chelsea provided so even Mac users can have a peek:

Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAKzYnP05SM

Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-amUCuR3p5I

The game itself (only for PC) can be downloaded from: https://www.dropbox.com/s/k0gvjst7inm54j6/Idle%20No%20More.exe

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CREE STORIES: An evening with Neal McLeod, Duncan Mercredi, and Rosanna Deerchild

ᐘᐦᐚ ᓇᐯᐤ / wahwâ napêw!

Having that Neal McLeod in town is bringing out the Cree shenanigans in some of our very favourite Winnipeg writers! Please join us this evening if you’re able. 

story

August 14, 2014
7:30pm
at Winnipeg’s Neechi Commons, corner of Main and Euclid.

Please join us for an evening of readings by some of Canada’s best-loved Aboriginal writers for a celebration of the Cree imagination in story, drama, and poetry.

THIS IS A FREE EVENT! ALL ARE WELCOME!

NEAL McLEOD is an acclaimed poet, theorist, painter, curator, filmmaker, and professor of Native Studies at Trent University. He was raised on the James Smith Cree Nation in Saskatchewan.

DUNCAN MERCREDI is a celebrated Cree poet and storyteller from Grand Rapids, Manitoba, who has brilliantly documented life in the bush and life on the streets of Winnipeg.

ROSANNA DEERCHILD is a Cree poet, broadcaster, and journalist from South Indian Lake, Manitoba. Her first book, This is a Small Northern Town, was widely praised and anthologized.

This event is part of the University of Manitoba
Summer Institute in Cree Language and Literature,
which is sponsored by the following U of M units:
Summer Session, the Centre for Creative Writing
and Oral Culture, the Department of Linguistics,
the Department of Native Studies, and the
Department of English, Film and Theatre.

For more info, contact:
ccwoc@cc.umanitoba.ca
Or check out our web site at:
umanitoba.ca/centres/ccwoc/CREE STORIES: An evening with Neal McLeod, Duncan Mercredi, and Rosanna Deerchild

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A little Cree thinking about Math from Delvin Kanewiyakiho

Some basic practical math concepts, and basic vocabulary – a video from Delvin Kanewiyakiho created for the “Math people at the Catholic School Board office in Saskatoon.”

Some vocabulary from this video (in SRO, cited from the Wolvengrey Dictionary):

  • akihcikêwin ᐊᑭᐦᒋᑫᐃᐧᐣ NI counting (CW)
  • ê-akihcikêt ‘he or she is counting’
  • wâhyaw ᐋᐧᐦᔭᐤ IPC far, far away (CW)
  • cîki ᒌᑭ IPC close, close by, near, nearby, near to (CW)
  • mistahi ᒥᐢᑕᐦᐃ IPC much, greatly, a great deal, a lot, lots; very, very many; very much so (CW)
  • apisîs ᐊᐱᓰᐢ IPC a little, a little bit (CW)

Search “Delvin Kanewiyakiho” on Youtube for dozens of other useful nêhiyawêwin words of the day.

 

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