KABLOONAS

KABLOONAS
Burial of John Franklin. Author: me

KABLOONAS

Kabloonas is the way in which the Inuit who live in the north part of Canada call those who haven´t their same ascendency.

The first time i read this word was in the book "Fatal Passage" by Ken McGoogan, when, as the result of the conversations between John Rae and some inuit, and trying to find any evidence of the ill-fated Sir John Franklin Expedition, some of then mentioned that they watched how some kabloonas walked to die in the proximities of the river Great Fish.

I wish to publish this blog to order and share all those anecdotes that I´ve been finding in the arctic literature about arctic expeditions. My interest began more than 15 years ago reading a little book of my brother about north and south pole expeditions. I began reading almost all the bibliography about Antarctic expeditions and the superknown expeditions of Scott, Amundsen, Shackleton, etc. After I was captured by the Nansen, Nobile and Engineer Andree. But the most disturbing thing in that little book, full of pictures, was the two pages dedicated to the last Franklin expedition of the S.XIX, on that moment I thought that given the time on which this and others expeditions happened, few or any additional information could be obtained about it. I couldn´t imagine that after those two pages It would be a huge iceberg full of stories, unresolved misteries, anecdotes, etc. I believe that this iceberg, on the contrary than others, would continue growing instead melting.



martes, 29 de marzo de 2016

THE SONG OF A DEATH MAN DREAMED BY AN ALIVE ONE

Reading Birket-Smith´s book about Inuit people I have found this pretty song which apparently was sang once by Copper Eskimos. 

"The song of a death man dreamed by an alive one"
Tell me, Was the life in Earth so beautiful? 

Here hapinness fills me
every time aurora raises over the Earth
and the great Sun
slides up in the sky.
But the rest of the time I lie, anxious and afraid 
covered by larva and worms
which quenched in the clavicle cavity 
and pierce my eyes
Aji, jai, ja

I found it creepy and beautiful at the same time, it would be the perfect epitaph to be carved in my gravestone. Any knowledge about its origins would be welcome.

1 comentario:

  1. Thanks to Russell Potter I could find who was the author, an Inuit poet called Netsit, and also the original transcription which is by far prettier than my original translation from Spanish. Besides, the poem is complete:

    Dead Man´s song (Dreamed by one who is alive)
    I am filled with joy
    When the day peacefully dawns
    Up over the heavens
    Ayi, yaiya
    I am filled with joy
    When the sun slowly rises
    Up over the heavens
    Ayi, yai ya
    But else I choke with fear
    At greedy maggot throngs
    They eat their way in
    At the hollow of my collarbone
    And in my eyes
    Ayi, yai ya
    Here I lie, recollecting
    How stifled with fear I was
    When they buried me
    In a snow hut out on the lake
    Ayi, yai ya
    A block of snow was pushed to
    Incomprehensible it was
    How my soul should make its way
    And fly to the game land up there
    Ayi, yai ya
    That door-block worried me
    And ever greater grew my fear
    When the fresh water ice split in the cold
    And the frost-crack thunderously grew
    Up over the heavens
    Ayi, yai ya
    Glorious was life
    In winter
    But did winter bring me joy?
    No! Ever was I so anxious
    For sole-skins and skins for kamiks
    Would there be enough for us all?
    Yes, I was ever anxious
    Ayi, yai ya
    Glorious was life
    In summer
    But did summer bring me joy?
    No! Ever was I so anxious
    For skins and rugs for the platform
    Yes, I was ever anxious
    Ayi, yai ya
    Glorious was life
    When standing at one´s fishing hole
    On the ice
    But did standing at the fishing hole bring me joy
    No! Ever was I so anxious
    For my tiny little fish-hook
    If it should not get a bite Ayi, yai ya
    Glorious was life
    When dancing in the dance house
    But did dancing in the dance house bring me joy?
    No! Ever was I so anxious
    That I could not recall
    The song I was to sing
    Yes, I was ever anxious
    Ayi, yai ya
    Glorious was life
    Now I am filled with joy
    For every time a dawn
    Makes white the sky of night
    For every time the sun goes up
    Over the heavens
    Ayi, yai ya

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