napowrimo – zhaangswi (nine)

if you pinch your nose and speak this word


you might sound like a real nish

‘cuz anishnaabemowin requires a certain nasal capacity

of enunciation


an dedication


it’s hard to mimic that nish accent

you know the kind, i call it real bush ndn

i try and it comes off as not legit

just a nish poser

i guess you got to live it to be it

be one with the bush

‘cuz me, even pointing my lips that one over there

is not deadly enough

gishpin nzhibige eta bangii even if i write only a little


zhaangswi mkwag gii niimiwag nine bears danced

zhaangswi makiig gii ngamowag nine frogs sang

nokimis giizis gii niimi grandmother moon danced

kina minwendamwag all are happy


brings me to the edge

of the bush calling

me to speak


2 thoughts on “napowrimo – zhaangswi (nine)

  1. Very Vera Waabegeeshig that poem, that’s true, you can say the words but if you don’t have that nasal sound, it’s not legit. I know because I have the same difficulty, thanks Vera for hitting the nail right on the head


    • i love it maanii! i heard this from a few language teachers who heard it from a few language teachers who heard it from… well you get the picture! we’re sure gonna look funny when we talk to each other! eyyyy 😀


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