POETRY 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A site dedicated to all the Maori who have introduced me to their fascinating culture in February-March 2007, especially Patu and Erena Hohepa (Waitangi) and Chris Mckenzie (Tokoroa), and also Sharon Armstrong, Simon Wi Rutene, Erima Henare (Wellington), Hana O'Regan and Elena Gapper (Christchurch).


Pokarekare ana (1914)

Pokarekare ana 
nga wai o Rotorua 
Whiti atu koe hine 
marino ana e

E hine e 
hoki mai ra
Ka mate ahau
I te aroha e

 

 

English translation of the Maori

 

They are agitated,
the waters of Rotorua. 
But when you cross over, girl
They will be calm.

Oh girl,
return to me.
I could die 
of love for you.

 

Prof Zuckermann’s quasi-homophonous translation to Israeli (2007)

 

פה קר", היא לי תקרא נא"
במים אותו רוח
בת-ים, צוק, וחן הינה
מראה לי את הלב

והינה חן
אותי מראה
כמה תיאהב
איתה ארוך הלב

 

 

Phonetic transcription of the Israeli

 

po kar hi li tikrá na
bamáim oto rúakh
bat yam tsuk vekhen hine
mará li et halév

vehine khen
oti mará
kama teahév
ita arókh halév

 

 

English translation of the Israeli

"It's cold here", she will tell me.
In the water there is that wind,
a mermaid, a cliff, and here's Khen
showing me her heart.
 
And here is Khen,
showing me off.
How much she'll be loved,
with her the heart goes long.