A charter to make our country a better place
A plane of weary & somewhat despondent equivalency

Where Am I From?

My land (Human Rights Watch)GREGORY BABLIS

A poem about identity and unity and the things
that make us different yet interlink us

I am from land,
          from river, sea and mountain.
I am from valley and volcano,
          from chilly mountain breeze and steaming lava.
I am from mother, father, uncle and aunty,
          proud in traditions, passed through generations.
I am from a wild,
          yet structured social organisation,
          of stories untold and yet to be told,
          lingering in the present and seeping to the future.

I’m from village and hauslain,
          from clan, tribe and totem,
          from haus tambaran and hausman.
I’m from round-house and long-house,
          from haus-kuk, hausboi and hausmeri.
I’m from high covenant home and the Pineapple Building,
          from Kapal Haus and Deloitte Tower.  

I’m from coconut and betel nut,
          from fish, magani and pig
I’m from Ox & Palm, Dolly and Diana,
          from Trukai rice, lamb flap, sago and Whagi Besta
I’m from the highland and island
          from the coast and atoll.
I’m from Krapehem and Gararua,
          clans I have yet to make proud.
From conch shell, tavur, pig tusk and garamut,
           whose wisdom I have yet to acquire.
I’m from mainline church and evangelical church,
          from Catholic and Lutheran,
          to SSEC, CRC, COC and AOG.

I’m from spirit and masalai,
           from dukduk and tumbuan.
I’m from Mande Tuo, Datagaliwabe and Yaweh
           from God-Three-One and the One-True-God,
          who my ancestors knew by many names.

The mat and the laplap,
            on which I sleep,
            provide me no extra warmth
            from freezing temperature.

But the dream that I dream,
            of my forefathers’ legacy,
            comforts me all my days,
            until I meet them again.

I’m from Dareni Primary School and Awaba Secondary School,
            from UPNG, Unitech and UOG,
             from student groups,
            standing and walking tall and free.

Greg BablisI’m from many languages and many cultures,
            many actions and many words,
            spoken and unspoken,
            deeds done and yet to be done.

I’m from many faces and many places,
            many beliefs and many voices.

And so,
            I’m from only one place on earth.
I am from Papua New Guinea. 


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

tony kawas

Mr Bablis is an admin on our facebook page empower yourself empower others. To see the depth of his patriot heart, please visit our page.

Gregory Bablis

Unless of course we are ourselves the anthropologists or at least actively involved in studying and understanding ourselves and the foreign anthropologist becomes but a facilitator of the process.

Philip Fitzpatrick

I can't think of anything worse than being the subject of an anthropologist's scrutiny Gregory. It has to be one of the most degrading experiences imaginable and is perhaps the worst aspect of what Rashmii Bell refers to as colonial superiority. Sends shivers up my spine.

Gregory Bablis

Thank you Philip. Indeed PNG's modernity, whatever level it's currently at, should be highlighted. The world does not need to look at us anymore solely through the anthropologist's lens when they can see us through the photographer's or cameraman's lens too.

John K Kamasua

Yes Greg.

good stuff to get us thinking about who we are and where we come from.

For too long we have been using what makes us different or divide us, to further divide and weaken us.

Lets use them to unite us more.

Philip Fitzpatrick

What you've done Gregory is encapsulate modern Papua New Guinea in a poem, that's what appeals to me, a kind of "football, meat pies and Holden cars" moment.

Paul Oates

Greg, we need to explore the answer to that question throughout the world today.

Gregory Bablis

Thanks all. It's funny how the things that make us different from the rest or from each other are the same things that can unite us. How can we explore more this juxtaposition of unity through diversity? i think that's a question we need to try to answer as a country.

Michael Dom

Good stuff on this menu.

I could do with some Wahgi Besta just about now.

Paul Oates

'Onya Greg. Spoken like a true patriot and son of the land.

Well done mate.

Philip Fitzpatrick

That's a great poem Gregory.

The best on Attitude I've seen for a while.

Daniel Kumbon

Great, great - proud Papua New Guinean in a nutshell.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)