From the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day Invasion (y-dialect, audio

Harry Raine, a Maskwacis Cree elder of the Louis Bull Tribe, brought the Cree language to Juno beach in Normandy to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of D-day 6 June 2019, and the Battle of Normandy. In honour of the fallen, he read “Binyon’s Verse” – translated into Plains Cree. Transcript and video follow, for those who’d like to read along. (Video used with thanks to his daughter, Alaine Raine, for her permission.)

ê-kîsi-ôhpikihcik kiyânaw ê-kêhtê-ayiwiyahk
ê-ispîhcisîhcik namôya ka-kêyihtamahcihowak
tânitahto askiy pahkisimohk otâkosiki êkwa kîkisêpâyâki
kâkikê kika-kiskisitotawânawak

ᐁ ᑮᓯ ᐆᐦᐱᑭᐦᒋᐠ ᑭᔮᓇᐤ ᐁ ᑫᐦᑌ ᐊᔨᐏᔭᕽ
ᐁ ᐃᐢᐲᐦᒋᓰᐦᒋᐠ ᓇᒨᔭ ᑲ ᑮ ᑭᐢᑫᔨᐦᑕᒪᐦᒋᐦᐅᐘᐠ
ᑖᓂᑕᐦᑐ ᐊᐢᑭᕀ ᐸᐦᑭᓯᒧᕽ ᐅᑖᑯᓯᑭ ᐁᑿ ᑮᑭᓭᐹᔮᑭ
ᑳᑭᑫ ᑭᑲ ᑭᐢᑭᓯᑐᑕᐚᓇᐘᐠ

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

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A Simple Lullaby: Belinda Vandenbroeck (n- and y-dialects, audio)

A genuine Cree lullaby from a genuine kôhkom, sung very gently to the tune of “Skip to my Lou.” Thank you to Belinda Vandenbroeck – a Winnipeg maskêkôskwêw! This one is perfect for real babies, or for little ones loving their baby dolls.

nipâ êkwa nipêpîm
nipâ êkwa nipêpîm
nipâ êkwa nipêpîm
mistahi kisâkihitin

ᓂᐹ ᐁᑿ ᓂᐯᐲᒼ
ᓂᐹ ᐁᑿ ᓂᐯᐲᒼ
ᓂᐹ ᐁᑿ ᓂᐯᐲᒼ
ᒥᐢᑕᐦᐃ ᑭᓵᑭᐦᐃᑎᐣ

Sleep now, my baby (three times)
I love you a lot!

 

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All about Indigenous Intellectual Property – In Plains Cree (y-dialect)

Thanks to Samara Harp for pointing me to this Government of Canada website that introduces the broad ideas of Indigenous Intellectual Property, and makes an interesting read in itself: https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/108.nsf/eng/00004.html

The site includes links to a document (in English) titled “Introduction to Intellectual Property Rights and the Protection of Indigenous Knowledge and Cultural Expressions in Canada”

Remarkably, it also presents the same document in translation into several Indigenous languages. The Plains Cree in particular is beautifully translated, by someone who is clearly both a master speaker, and a master writer of SRO. In Cree, the document is titled ê-pîkiskwâtamihk omâmitonêyihcikêwasinahikan kâtipêyihtamihk êkwa ta-kanawêyihtahkik nistam-iyiniw kiskêyihtamowin êkwa opimâcihowi-wâpahtamowina ôta kâ-kanâtahk.

I’m not sure who is responsible for the Plains Cree translation, but it follows SRO spelling with great care (so every word can be looked up in the dictionary), and sets an exemplary standard for government translation projects. To whoever did this awesome work: hay-hay! We’re awfully proud of you!

(I thought about replicating the Cree document here in whole – then recognized the irony of stealing a document about intellectual property rights! I’ll add it here if and when I receive permission, so the document can be used with our click-in-text lookup tool!)

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êkwa, mîcisotân! Come on, Let’s eat! (audio, y-dialect)

Thanks to Crystal Anderson for permission to use her photo of two of my favourite Cree speakers in training!

Here’s a little mealtime vocabulary to practise while you’re at the table (or while you’re practicing for the table). Thanks to Solomon Ratt for audio, and to Andrea Custer for useful additions (with audio). 

EnglishSROSyllabic
Come on, let’s eat!êkwa, mîcisotân!ᐁᑿ, ᒦᒋᓱᑖᐣ!
Are you hungry?kinôhtêhkatân cî?ᑭᓅᐦᑌᐦᑲᑖᐣ ᒌ?
I am hungryninôhtêhkatânᓂᓅᐦᑌᐦᑲᑖᐣ
I am not hungrynamôya ninôhtêhkatânᓇᒨᔭ ᓂᓅᐦᑌᐦᑲᑖᐣ
foodmîciwinᒦᒋᐏᐣ
yesâhaᐋᐦᐊ
nonamôyaᓇᒨᔭ
pleasemahtiᒪᐦᑎ
thank youhay-hayᐦᐊᕀ ᐦᐊᕀ
eatmîciso (just you), mîcisotân (let’s), mîcisok (you all)ᒦᒋᓱ, ᒦᒋᓱᑖᐣ, ᒦᒋᓱᐠ
drinkminihkwê (just you), minihkwêtân (let’s), minihkwêk (you all)ᓂᐦᑵ, ᒥᓂᐦᑵᑖᐣ, ᒥᓂᐦᑵᐠ
start eatingmâci-mîcisoᒫᒋ ᒦᒋᓱ
finish eatingkîsi-mîcisoᑮᓯ ᒦᒋᓱ
eat it all upkitâᑭᑖ
this tastes goodwîhkasinᐑᐦᑲᓯᐣ
milktohtôsâpoyᑐᐦᑑᓵᐳᕀ
breadpîswêhkasikanᐲᓷᐦᑲᓯᑲᐣ
meatwiyâsᐏᔮᐢ
bannockpahkwêsikanᐸᐦᑵᓯᑲᐣ
fruitwîhkanosᐑᐦᑲᓄᐢ
vegetablepîwi-kiscikânisᐲᐏ ᑭᐢᒋᑳᓂᐢ
waternipiyᓂᐱᕀ
platenapakiyâkanᓇᐸᑭᔮᑲᐣ
foodmîciwinᒦᒋᐏᐣ
spoonêmihkwânᐁᒥᐦᒁᐣ
forkcîstahâsêponᒌᐢᑕᐦᐋᓭᐳᐣ
knifemôhkomânᒨᐦᑯᒫᐣ
cupminihkwâcikanᒥᓂᐦᐠᐚᒋᑲᐣ
Are you full? Have you had enough to eat? kikîspon cî?ᑭᑮᐢᐳᐣ ᒌ?
Are you done? êkwani nâh? ᐁᑿᓂ ᓈᐦ?
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Federal Court Issues Decision in Cree and Dene (y-dialect, audio)

A CBC news report from 29 May 2019 includes – for the first time ever – parallel summaries of its judgment in English, Dene and Plains Cree. The judgment was made by Justice Roger Lafrenière, chair of the court’s Aboriginal Law Bar Liaison Committee, who said the translation follows the Supreme Court’s directive to issue rulings in plain language, but goes one step further. 

While others may celebrate the specifics of the ruling, I went hunting for the Cree in written form that the article promises, and found the pdf that includes English, Dene and Cree, along with the Cree and Dene audio files. 

From the pdf, I’ve extracted the Cree text (below), and I’ve also saved the audio file here for those who enjoying learning this way. (You can find the actual decision here: https://decisia.lexum.com/fc-cf/decisions/en/item/406216/index.do?q=T-146-19; The pdf and audio files are available here: https://www.fct-cf.gc.ca/en/pages/media/webcast

opiniyāwēhowi-pīsim 24, 2019 – oyasiwēwin kī-pakitinikatēw anohc ohci Justice Sébastien Grammond okimāwīhk wiyasiwēwin ohci pihci file T-146-19: Samantha Whalen mawinēham Fort McMurray No. 448 nistam-iyiniwak

itwēstamākēwin ohci kiskinwahikēwin isi nēhiyawēwin mīna ō-cīpwēyānimōwin

okimāwīhk wiyasiwēwin āhkamēyihtamwak ayiwāk ta-kwayāci nēhpēmina isi Nēhiyaw-iyiniw kīspin akāwātamwak ta-pē-itohtatāt wiyasiwēwin mawinēhikēwinahk kiki maskawēy ihtamowin ohci wiyasiwēwinohk. tāpiskōc, mihcēt wiyasiwēwinohk kīhkihtowinahk miciminikātēw tipiskoc pihcīnēhiyawi-māmawāyāwinohk ahpō isi webcast ohci wiyasiwēwikamikohk; mīna ita katawāhk, wiyasiwēwinohk paminikēwin isi nakayāskamowin ta-tawinikihk kiki nēhiyawi-nahēyihtowin mīna wiyasiwēwin nakayāskamowina. asici pakitinikēwin anohc ōma itēyihtamowin, wiyasiwēwinohk mīna otinam kīhtwām yahkohtēwin ta-osihtat isi wiyasiwēwinohk itēyihtamowina ayiwāk ta-kwayāci nēhpēmina – asici kiskinwahikēwin osīhcikātēw mīna masinahikātēw pihcī nēhiyawi-pīkiskwēwin ohci
parties. wiyasiwēwinohk nanāskomēw ōhi pīkiskwēwin kanawēyihcikēw ēkwāna ka-wīcihiwēt asici kwayācihtāwin ōma kiskinwahikēwin isi nēhiyawēwin mīna ō-cīpwēyānimōwin.

kiskinwahikēwin ohci itasiwācikēwin

ispīhk kisē-pīsim 2019, ōki nīsōhkamākēwak ohci Fort McMurray nistam-iyiniwak pakitinēwak pēyak pimohtēstamakēwa, pimohtēstamakēw Samantha Whalen. ōki nīsōhkamākēwak miskwēyihtamwak ēkwāna pimohtēstamakēw Whalen kī-nōcihtāw māyahkamikisiwin, asici mīna mōskipicikēwin sōniyāwiācimostākēwin ohci ēkwa mīna ō-wīcihiwēwin isi kipiskākēwin ohci nistam-iyiniwak ō-taskīwin.

pimohtēstamakēw Whalen mawinēhēw ōki nīsōhkamākēwak ō-tēyihtamowina nīkān okimāwīhk wiyasiwēwin ēwako ōma ohci nīsōhkamākēwak namōya ayāwak maskawisīwin ta-pakitinacik.

wiyasiwēwinohk têpakêýimow asici pimohtēstamakēw Whalen. wiyasiwēwinohk mina kanawāpahtam ēkwanima Fort McMurray nistam-iyiniwak ayāwak pimipahtāwin code, ekwa mina nīsōhkamākēwak kispēwatam ō-tēyihtamowin mamisītotam isi itēyihtamowina pihcī pimipahtāwin code ēkwānima itwēmakan pimohtēstamakēwak ta-kī kētiwītsahwāw ahpō ta-kī pakitināw kīspin itōtamwak āsōnē atiht kīkway. maka, wiyasiwēwinohk miskawēwak pimohtēstamakēw Whalen namōya ēsa ēkosi kīkway kīitotam. nīsōhkamākēwak namōya ta-kī pakitinēwak pimohtēstamakēwa piko kikway ohci maka anihi piko ta-masinahikatekih ita pimipahtāwin code.

ōki nīsōhkamākēwak mīna kispēwatam ō-tēyihtamowina isi itwēwak ēkwānima kī-nīkānēyihtākwan nistam-iyiniwak iyinihkēwin. ōki nistam-iyiniwak itwēwak ēkwānima ispīhk aspin nīstanaw niyānanosāp askiy, kī-pakitinēwak nisto pimohtēstamakēwak. wiyasiwēwinohk pītosēyihtam asici nistam-iyiniwak. wiyasiwēwinohk miskwēyihtamwak ēkwanima nīso ōhi pakitinikēwina kiki ēwako ohci wihcikatēw pihcī pimipahtāwin code. kotak pakitinikēwin kī-sēhkē tēpakēyimow. tāspwāw, nistam-iyiniwak namōya ayawak iyinihkēwin ta-pakitinacik pimohtēstamakēwa piko kīkway ohci maka anihi piko tamasinahikatēkihk ita pimipahtāwin code.

wiyasiwēwinohk kiponam Nīsōhkamākēwahk ō-tasiwēwin mīna kāwi ātoskahāw pimohtēstamakēw Whalen.

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Vowel and Consonant Sounds for Reading Cree in SRO & Syllabics: Solomon Ratt (most dialects)

Some Cree words illustrating SRO consonant sounds: 

Ready to level up?

Intermediate: Find an introduction to reading SRO here. 

Advanced: Download a free copy of How to Spell it in Cree (the entire Wolvengrey & Okimâsis spelling book).

 

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Interconnectedness: Solomon Ratt (th-dialect)

Photo credit: Solomon Ratt – July 1, 2018, Via Ferrata on Mt. Norquay, Banff.

iyako ôma âniskôhtowin:
pimitisahamani mitho-mîskanaw kika-wîcîwikon kahkithaw kihci-kiskinwahamâkîwina:
sîpîthihtamowin, kisîwâtisiwin, sîpithawîsiwin, sâkihitowin, sôhkisiwin, sîpihkisiwin, nanâskomowin, kanâcihowin, mithwîthihtamowin, kistîthihtamowin, tâpowakîthihtamowin, nanahihtamowin, mâtinamâtowin, manâcihitowin, pakosîthihtâkosiwin, tapahtîthimisowin.

ᐃᔭᑯ ᐆᒪ ᐋᓂᐢᑰᐦᑐᐏᐣ:
ᐱᒥᑎᓴᐦᐊᒪᓂ ᒥᖪ ᒦᐢᑲᓇᐤ ᑭᑲ ᐑᒌᐏᑯᐣ ᑲᐦᑭᖬᐤ ᑭᐦᒋ ᑭᐢᑭᓌᐦᐊᒫᑮᐏᓇ:
ᓰᐲᖨᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ, ᑭᓰᐚᑎᓯᐏᐣ, ᓰᐱᖬᐑᓯᐏᐣ, ᓵᑭᐦᐃᑐᐏᐣ, ᓲᐦᑭᓯᐏᐣ, ᓰᐱᐦᑭᓯᐏᐣ, ᓇᓈᐢᑯᒧᐏᐣ, ᑲᓈᒋᐦᐅᐏᐣ, ᒥᖮᐑᖨᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ, ᑭᐢᑏᖨᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ, ᑖᐳᐘᑮᖨᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ, ᓇᓇᐦᐃᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ, ᒫᑎᓇᒫᑐᐏᐣ, ᒪᓈᒋᐦᐃᑐᐏᐣ, ᐸᑯᓰᖨᐦᑖᑯᓯᐏᐣ, ᑕᐸᐦᑏᖨᒥᓱᐏᐣ᙮

This is inter-connectedness:
If you follow the good road then all sacred teachings will accompany you:
Patience, kindness, tolerance, love, strength, resilience, gratitude, cleanliness, happiness, respect, faith, obedience, sharing, protection, hope, humility.

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Paddle your Canoe! Solomon Ratt (th- or y-dialect, audio)

Canoes: Christine Ravenis, Ben Godden and Kevin Bear

Live from Midway Lake, Saskatchewan, fresh from this very weekend’s Cree-focused immersion camping trip, Solomon Ratt teaches his companions his own version of “Row, Row, Row.” You might like to slow it down a bit to sing with kids, so they don’t capsize at the pâwistik! (Thanks to Christine Ravenis for sharing her video!) 

pim-pim-pimiskā pimiskā osihk
mōcikan mōcikan īkāwītha kwatapī!!

ᐱᒼ  ᐱᒼ  ᐱᒥᐢᑳ  ᐱᒥᐢᑳ  ᐅᓯᕽ
ᒨᒋᑲᐣ  ᒨᒋᑲᐣ  ᐄᑳᐑᖬ  ᑿᑕᐲ!!

Trans: Paddle along in a boat
It’s lots of fun, it’s lots of fun: Don’t tip over! 

*For y-dialect, use êkâwiya instead of îkâwîtha. 

 

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Standing Witness: Poundmaker’s Exoneration 23 May 2019

Solomon Ratt stands witness from First Nations University

“Before the Battle of Cut Knife, Poundmaker led his band members to Fort Battleford to both reaffirm their relationship with the Crown and press for fair treatment. But neither government officials nor the RCMP would emerge from the fort”.

We hope the mainstream media is filled today with stories acknowledging the great historic wrong that was done to Chief Poundmaker and many of his Cree allies following the 1885 Resistance. For us, it’s an opportunity to stand witness.

Thank you to Winona Wheeler for permission to share some of the images she shared today acknowledging the work of her late husband, Tyrone Tootoosis, Sr. 

Here are some links to stories relating to events past and present to help us all remember.

https://alumni.usask.ca/news/2019/exonerating-chief-poundmaker.php?fbclid=IwAR1iTggE_4JGQVwE5MJxBt-0JesybUZ_dnxO7x8OCRANc8cJHPg9PXrDuw4

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/bill-waiser-blair-stonechild-applaud-poundmaker-exoneration-1.5143950?__vfz=medium%3Dsharebar&fbclid=IwAR1pO8grqrSVDvQEpYjlwGhKjF1cnZOxXd7pmGLwiGRYoWg5BYKR1lvyj3w

Justin Trudeau in Saskatchewan to exonerate Chief Poundmaker of treason

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/chief-poundmaker-exoneration-1.5143863

https://www.thestar.com/calgary/2019/05/23/history-painted-chief-poundmaker-as-a-bloodthirsty-rebel-thursdays-exoneration-will-clear-his-name.html

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This Land is Your Land: Laura Burnouf (audio, y-dialect)

Laura Burnouf enjoys using music to help teach Cree.

Thanks to Minnie McKenzie for sending me this recording, and to Laura Burnouf for letting me share it here. “This Land is Your Land” was written and originally recorded by Woody Guthrie using lots of American place names. In the 1960s, it was recorded by a Canadian folk group called The Travellers who rewrote it using Canadian places and imagery (making it popular from Bona Vista to Vancouver Island in the process). This Cree version includes fewer specifics than either English version. By focusing on more basic vocabulary Laura has made it into a great singalong teaching tool. 

kiya kitaskiy – This Land Is Your Land

Chorus:

kiya kitaskiy, niya nitaskiy
kīwētinohk ohci, sāwanohk isko(hk)
kiya kitaskiy, niya nitaskiy
kiyānaw ōma kitaskīnaw

ē-pimohtēyān niwāpahtēn
misiwē ispimihk, mīskanāhk ohci
nīhci ē-itāpiyān, wāsēkamāw
kiyānaw ōma kitaskīnaw

kiya kitaskiy niya nitaskiy
kīwētinohk ohci, sāwanohk isko(hk)
kiya kitaskiy niya nitaskiy
kiyānaw ōma kitaskīnaw

pīsim ē-cahkāsot, ē-pimohtēyān
kīsik ēkwa askiy wēpāstanwa
pīsim ispimihk, ninikamon
kiyānaw ōma kitaskīnaw

 

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