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in Hanunoo


Traveling
by Antoon Postma

Magkunkuno ti karasyaw
Manga salagan naw-an
Ako inda man-ginan
Kugon kan talabtaban
Tugka son ay ti lagdan
Tugka init palisan
No ud di may migbalkan
Kantam labag buyungan
Sabungan paglut-an wan
Salagan pagsungan wan
Ho di bay toy lantang wan

Says the deer with antlers wide:
My dear children, still so small,
I am leaving you behind,
going to the grassy hills.
If the hour is getting late,
if the sun is going down
and I haven't yet returned
to the house wherein we dwell,
my dear wife, you better cry,
and you, too, my children dear,
for I'll stay away for long!

From Treasure of a Minority: The Ambahan: a poetic expression of the Mangyans of Southern Mindoro, Philippines by Antoon Postma, published by Arnoldus Press in 1972. Reprinted with permission from Antoon Postma and the Mangyan Heritage Center, http://www.mangyan.org.

The interpretation of each ambahan by Antoon Postma is not just a translation, but a poetic rendering in the seven syllable rhythm, as close as possible to its original Mangyan poem.

© Antoon Postma, sketch by Waway Linsahay Saway

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JULIA "MATOK"
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