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A Charyan Brothel Song in Teonaht

From:Sally Caves <scaves@...>
Date:Tuesday, May 25, 1999, 23:45
Traltan!  (Greetings!)

I regret to put before you tired ones another conlang
translation challenge, but there it is, as Sally would say.

Mandein lua Radauq, a Charyan poet, is in Teon not well-
known, but a few of his poems from his famous _Brahir laqa
canun tan ryabay_, sometimes called his "Brothel Songs,"
have with great interest been studied by my people.
Scholar Boudewijn Rempt declares that the "middle grade
honorific" used in the poem indicates that these are
conversations that occur in a brothel, but I would venture
to suggest that the patron is in affectionate love with the
courtesan.  In the Teonaht have I endeavored to give it the
tone between very dear polite lovers and beloveds that we find.

I'm a beginning poet, and regret to say that a few liberties
have I taken with Mandein's direct and unequivocal language.
What I give you probably is as luxuriant and paranomastic
and indirect as Teonaht prose poetry ever rises to.  I have
yet to learn rhyming, and regret that it is more a prose than
a song.

As for me all humbly, I sincerely hope that no one is offended,
and three cheers for blue ribbons and freedom of speech.  To
Boudewijn Rempt and Irina Rempt are my thanks for their directing
me to this poem, and we all welcome your own translations!
Eventually, if too tedious this exercise seems to you, I will
put on a webpage both Sally's translation into English of the
Teonaht and also her more frank one of the Denden.  But we would
like to offer you a chance to have a go at these, so to talk.

Issytra Seppelnarmyeeb, Tsorelai Mundya

Post Script:  I give my version, and then, below, the Charyan
Version with glossary for both.  --I.S.


Lreen, uinse mal lreen;
Atwats, hal hlreen kwindris,
Hynyil reik ydonnarihs ilid
Hea alid deluanhar!

Tytats, hal hlreen, il mimhsaves
Ilid hea alid deluanhar!

Hal hlreen, ta nwetis twav rinteln,
O kwindris kombyadel,
Ta hsovvary twav begbendillinma
Il mimmera kwedot fylid beglizend;

Celil nililuan minik fylid dinme tanta;
Aryil nikklespr las fylid nimmeslim
Hrelor hsommante; il grift mennabys fylid
Aiban mimamendorl hser twav o lehenaht myhhabuo.

Yry ev kombya to fel ol drisma, ma
Mal lreen, uinse lreen;
Bomddzabran uopa il porip fylid otamywet;
Bomtyttra, tsem mimraddispr-lin

Memwa hsobkkava o tystra bompperam,
Mal bombrinkkebo, bomfarbbrytma,
Bomkykytra il tola aiba, avlyaht ai milikan!

Boffindaf!  Ilid harod voak aiba fonmaf,
Hal hset kombyaht, boffindaf!


AI, "its"
AIBAN, "these."
AL, "my."
ALID, "my" + gen.ending: "of my."
ARYIL, from _ary_, to, towards, and _il_  "to the."
ATWATS, from _atwarem_, "walk, stroll."  1st.pers. pl.Imp.
AVLYAHT, from _avly_, "abundance": "abundant."
BEGBENDILINMA, "make a hair rope," "braid."
BEGLIZEND, "locks," "hair."
BOFFINDAF, from _boffindaned_, "erupt, explode" (said of volcanoes).
        This is in the imperative.
BOM-, progressive prefix, from _pom_, "with."
BOMBRINKKEBO, "diving."  from _keborem_, "falling," + brin, intens.
BOMDDZABRAN, from _dzabraned_, "wavering," "going back and forth."
BOMFARBBRYTMA, from _farbryt_, "nest," "making a nest, nestling (into)."
BOMKKYTRA, from _kytrarem_, "make something shake."
BOMPPERAM, from _peramrem_, "seek," "seeking."
BOMTYTTRA, from _tytytrarem_, "stammer," "stammering."
CELIL, from _cel_ plus _il_, "In the."
DELUANHAR, "beloved," (usually) female lover."
DINME, "smile."
DRISMA, "harden."
EV, "by, from."
FEL, "you" (object case).
FONMAF, from _fonma_, "make deep, deepen."  Imperative.
        Very interpretive version of Mandein's "nanah";
        every culture has a different metaphoric notion of what
        happens in sexual culmination.
FYLID, from _fyl_, "your," and _id_, gen.suff.  "of your."
GRIFTA, "weight."
HAL, from _al_, "my."  The "h" is vocative.
HAROD, "rabbit."  Often a term of endearment for the beloved.
        Also an animal associated with sexual lust.
HAROD VOAK,  "rabbit hole."
HEA, "country, land."
HLREEN, see _lreen_ below.  In the vocative.
HRELOR, "noble."
HSER, "smooth."
HSETA, from _jeta_, "young woman, girl." Vocative.
HSOBKKAVA, "hidden," from _kavarem_ with passive prefix.
HSOMMANTE, "descend," "come down."  Unexpressed subject
        is TWAV, "they."
HSOVVARY, "downward."
HYNYIL, from _hyn_, through.  "through the."
IL, "the."  Objective form.
ILID, il + id; with gen.suffix: "of the."
KWEDOT, from _kweda_, "wheat."  Makes a compound with
        mimmera below.
KWINDRIS, from _kwindr_, wine.  "Tipsy, drunk, wine-full."
KOMBYA, "love," "sexual desire."
KOMBYADEL, from _kombya_, "sexual love": AFFECTIONATE
        (said of lovers).
KOMBYAHT, "lecherous, lusty, lascivious."
LAZ, "white."
LEHENAHT, from _lehen_, (physical) pleasure: "pleasurable"
        O LEHANAHT, "pleasurably."
LREEN, from _lre_ (sing.), "finger."  PLURAL.
MA, "but."
MAL, "now."
MEMWA, "water."
MENNABYS, "hefty, substantial, material."
MILIKAN, "streams."
MIMHSAVES, "grasses."
MIMMERA, from _era_ with mim-prefix: "aisles, rows."
        MIMMERA KWEDOT, "rows of wheat."
MIMRADDISPR-LIN, "a divining rod."  -LIN,
MINIK, "little, small."
MYHABUO, "grasp," "take in the hand."
NIKKLESPR, "ledges," from sg. _klespr_.
NILILUAN, "valleys," from  sg. _liluan_, "valley."
NIMMESLIM, "shoulders."
NWETIS, "much."  Goes with "ta."
O, "of," "from."  makes an adverb of an adjective:
        O KWINDRIS, "tipsily, drunkenly."
        O LEHENAHT, "pleasurably."
        O TYSTRA, "suddenly."
OL, "me."  OL DRISMA, "I harden," middle voice.
ONTAMYWET, "little stomach, belly."  from ontam + ywet.
PORIP, "spoon, cup."
REIK, "crown," "crest."
RINTELN, from _rintelned_, "shake, tremble." (non-volit.)
TA, in this instance, "how."  As in "how lovely!"
TANTA, v. "dance."  The unexpressed subject is TWAV, "they."
TO, "for"
TOLA, "mound," "small hill."
TSEMA, "like"
TWAV, "they."
TYSTRA, "sudden."  O TYSTRA, "suddenly."
TYTATS, from _tytatrem_, "separate, divide, part."
UINSE, "only, just."
UOPA, "above, over."
VOAK, "hole."
YDONNARIHS,  from _ydonar_, "forest,": "foresty, forested."
YRY, emphasized pronoun, "I, me," "as for me."

And now the Denden (or is it Charyan?) poem from
_Bahri laqa canun tan ryabay_ of Mandein lua Radauq.
I regret that the diacritical remarks I cannot reproduce.
As you can see, this poem is shorter than the Teonaht
poem.  Ah well!


Lamay ("little song"): Neranmen.
From _Brahir laqa tanun ban ryabay_

Edo qoiqoi sumzi nerananmen
Susu-umen edi hod'atahl par
Matan edi heril heyayamen
Wuwish edi yeyi'zu, tirme'ar

Sungmen edi teal ar, dambazi
Yuanel tiran edi yanangdir tan
Edo nahak hya tan sunane
Nuynuy nanlan biny ar anyalan

Mo dulane, qoiqoi dena altah
Raygin penne tan naina tupa

Xoxo bernus musa yaraush, bajanhau!
Edi yenu nanah drai'xux, bajanhau!

LEXICON:  (Quoted from Mr. Rempt)

Reduplication of a part of the stem of a verb infers
a delimitative aspect to the verb: doing something
for a while, for a bit, now and then.  The rest of
the grammar will be clear from the text, I think.
Apostrophes indicate a relation between noun and
adjective, mostly.

-zu     locative suffix: "in."
-ar     locative suffix.
-dir    plural suffix (for polysyllabic words)
-hau    imperative suffix.
-men    amatory attitudinal suffix, doing something in love
-y(i)   diminutive suffix.
Mandein male personal name.
altah   to long for.
anyalan, navel.
bajan,  to burst, reach an orgasm.
bernus, hill
bin     belly.
brahir  thousand
canun   between
damba   weight
dena    to stammer
di      second person singular pronoun, middle-grade honorific
        (i.e., the normal form, but not the affective one,
        which is used between lovers, so this conversation
        takes place in a brothel.)
do      first person singular pronoun, middle grade honorific
drai    woman, girl
dulane  to hesitate, waver
e-      possessive pronominal prefix: edo: mine; edi, yours
heril   braid (of hair)
hod'athal, forehead
hya     smooth
heya    glide
laqa    song
lua     of (like German _von_ or Dutch _van_; indicates place
                of origin).
matan   alongside
mo      then, at that moment
musa    flow, stream
nahak   penis (familiar term, not coarse)
naina   to nestle
nanah   turn, to turn around
nanlan  to run
neran   to walk, to stroll
nuy     quick, quickly
par     over (the surface of something)
penne   to dive
qoi     finer.  Reduplication often means plural.
raygin  field, cornfield
ryabay  cornstalks (wheat, I mean, not the cobby kind).
sunane  to stroll, to saunter
sung    to rest
sumzi   drunk, but not pleasantly so. tipsy, perhaps?
susu    to shake, to go to and fro, to rock gently
tan     genitive, "glue" particle.
teal    shoulder
tiran   to grapple, to take, to grasp
tirme   neck
tupa    suddenly
wuwish  to dance
xoxo    to shake
xux     lusty, having pleasure and desire in sex
yanang  breast
yaraush lavish, abundant sweat
yenu    vagina (familiar term, but not coarse)
yuanei  to have pleasure, fun (although that sounds a bit off)
ye      dimple, hole