Chinook Jargon songs, part 3
From the same book as parts 1 and 2 (page 66): found in the 1864-1867 diary of Arthur S. Farwell, ‘later Surveyor-General’ for BC. (See also part 1, part 2 and part 4.)
These lyrics are a wonderful example of folk music — the diarist has embellished at least two other known PNW Chinook songs, “Seattle Illahee” and “Be not kwass/quass of nika“!
Tsee klootchman, fly with me [sweet woman]
Leave behind thy light canim [canoe]
And we will hyak klatawa [swiftly go]
And seek the forest dim.
For a while forget the salt chuck [sea]
Where the silv’ry salmon play–
We will take a tenas moosum [little sleep (i.e. make love)]
While the daylight fades away.
Oh! Be not kwass with nika [shy…me]
But thy seeowist turn on me [face or eyes]
For thou canst not fail but kumtux [know]
That I hiyu tickie thee [greatly love]
Then breathe the soft nowitka [yes]
Kloshe chako to my arms [nicely come]
And in the forest lonely
I’ll nanitch all thy charms. [see]
I will potlatch hiyu icktas [give much clothing]
Nika mahkook sapolil. [I’ll buy flour]
Of sugar and lebiskwee [biscuits]
Nika mamook thee thy fill [I’ll ~give]
With passesse spread beneath us [blanket]
We’ll kapswalla on the ground, [steal (as in k. moosum: make illicit love]
Klonas you will klap a tenas [perhaps…find (become with)…child]
While the dew is falling down.
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