Tuesday, May 28, 2024
HOW MANY BIRDS FOLLOWED ROBIN TO THE WORLD?

HOW MANY BIRDS FOLLOWED ROBIN TO THE WORLD?

– Ẹyẹ Méló T’olongo W’áyé (YORUBA)

(A Yoruba folksong, mostly sung by children. “Ẹyẹ olongo” is the robin bird. ‘T’olongo w’áyé” sounds like the short form of “tọ olongo wá ayé,” which means “followed robin to the earth.”)

Eye m’elo t’olongo w’aye?

T’olongo!

Okan dudu aro,

T’olongo!

Okan rere osun,

T’olongo!

So-so-so f’iru ba’le,

Soooooo!

So-so-so f’iru ba’le,

Sooo!!!

Eye m’elo t’olongo w’aye?

T’olongo!

Okan dudu aro,

T’olongo!

Okan rere osun,

T’olongo!

So-so-so f’iru ba’le,

Soooooo!

So-so-so f’iru ba’le,

Sooo!!!

(ENGLISH TRANSLATION BY DELE AJAJA)

How many birds followed robin to the world?

Followed robin!

One was blue like indigo,

Followed robin!

The other was red like camwood varnish,

Followed robin!

Dashing-dashing-dashing tails in the sand!

Dashing!

Dashing-dashing-dashing tails in the sand!

Dashing!!!

How many birds followed robin to the world?

Followed robin!

One was blue like indigo,

Followed robin!

The other was red like camwood varnish,

Followed robin!

Dashing-dashing-dashing tails in the sand!

Dashing!

Dashing-dashing-dashing tails in the sand!

Dashing!!!

IMAGE: One was blue like indigo; the other was red like camwood varnish.

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TALES BY MOONLIGHT YEARS

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