Tag: Death (Page 2 of 3)
A San lament from South Africa, sung by Xaa-ttin for the death of his friend the magician and rain maker Nuin-kui-ten. The halting rhythms of the English translation, and the image of the bow string which no longer vibrates, are perfectly expressive of grief. The song was originally recorded in the 1870s.
They were the people, those who
broke the string for me…
A popular Zulu song about the sinking of SS Mendi in February 1917 as it carried African Battalions belonging to the South African Native Labour Corps on their way to World War 1 in France. The ship collided in fog off the Isle of Wight with an empty merchant vessel bound for Argentina. 646 men were drowned, in one of the worst ever marine disasters…
A lament by Sotho women, said to date from the time of Shaka Zulu’s wars. There are different versions of this song in several southern Africa languages, presenting Shaka’s achievements from the perspective of those who suffered from them.
Weakened and weeping, I remain among the ruins.
Weakened and weeping, I remain amid trackless plains…
A very old Ngoni poem from Malawi. This was a poem traditionally performed at weddings, but became popularly sung at other occasions such as church meetings. The refrain, ‘the earth does not get fat’, refers to the earth constantly consuming the dead.
The earth does not get fat.
It makes an end of those who wear the head plumes