Monday, July 9, 2018

KÅNTAN CHAMORRITA



An tumåtånges i patgon
nå'e na'-ña entot tupu.
Yanggen sige ha' de tumånges,
håtsa hulo' ya un na' susu.

(When the child is crying
give him a piece of sugar cane to eat.
If he keeps on crying,
lift him up and breast feed him.)




Now, I could be wrong but I don't think this verse is to be taken literally.

I'm not sure it's good to give an infant a piece of fibrous sugar cane that s/he can choke on! Even with mommy watching, I think it would be a challenge to get a baby to just suck the juice and not swallow the fiber. And chew with what teeth? No; I think the verse is meant solely for entertainment value.

Entot means a cut-off piece, a fragment. It comes from the word utot, which means to cut off.

Tupu (or tupo) is sugar cane. It is not to be confused with tupu' (tupo'), which has a glota at the end, which means a water well.

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