National Aboriginal History Month Day Three: mistikwaskihk, pakahamân, têwêhikan

CalendarUrban Native Magazine and Regina Aboriginal Professionals Association have launched a photograph challenge (for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) in honour of National Aboriginal History Month. They’re using the Twitter hashtag #NAHM2015PhotoADay.

Here at the Cree Literacy Network, we’ve decided to play along, by gathering the images suggested – but (with help from Solomon Ratt) captioning them in Cree.

For Day Three, the word is Drum. Sol has given us three different words for drum in Cree:

  • mistikwaskihk / ᒥᐢᑎᑲᐧᐢᑭᕁ 
  • pakahamân / ᐸᑲᐦᐊᒫᐣ 
  • têwêhikan / ᑌᐁᐧᐦᐃᑲᐣ 

And let’s not forget the beater or drum stick!

  • pakahamânâhtik ᐸᑲᐦᐊᒫᓈᐦᑎᐠ 

These photos of Jamie Martel’s newly finished drums are shared with his permission. Jamie says mistikwaskihk sounds right to him. He just finished making these beautiful drums, and named one Yellowbird – for the bird that visited his windowsill as he was completing it. Some elders say the yellow bird is a symbol of language. Others say it is the thunderbird in physical form. You can look for more about Jamie on Facebook as Zitkana Wakinyan Sapa.

About Arden Ogg

Arden Ogg is Director of the Cree Literacy Network, a not-for-profit-in-the-making with the goal of creating Cree language literacy materials suitable for use by learners of all ages.
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