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Tonight the Moon Carries Her Umbrella

| Ples Singsing

Translations: Bahasa by Sylvana Sandi; Tok Pisin by Michael Dom; Hiri Motu by Gemona Konemamata

She rises late in the afternoon
And tonight she carries her umbrella
Smoky tendrils trail behind her glittering sarung kobaya
As she strolls across my universe
Far, far away she walks, alone
Where my arms cannot reach to embrace her

Dia beranjak keslangan hori ini
Dan molom ini dia membawa payungnya
Gugusan kabut terpapar di balik kilauan sarung keboyanya
Saat dia berjalan melintasi duniaku
Jauh dan semaken jauh dia melongkah sendiri
Dimana tanganku tok bisa menggapoi untuk memeluknya

Meri ia emi kirap long bikpela apinun
Na long nait emi karim ambrala bilong em
Simuk i aigris bihainim kalakala laplap bilong em
Taim emi wokabaut long heven antap
Longwe turu em iet i wokabaut
Na han bilong mi ino inap long holim pasim em

Adorai vabura vaburanai upkekeni da etoreisi
Ia na anuaboi ai ena tamaru e abiakau
Ena rami namo hereana na kwalau ese e mata-digara laia bena murina mo e loa
Guba atai ai e loa neganai
Ia na gabu daudau sibona e raka
Lau imagu na se gerere ia idogo taona.


Poetry crafted from a West Papuan saying

nonya – South-East Asian woman of mixed ethnic descent. Probably derived from Portuguese senhora

By the end of the 1920s, young nyonyas abandoned the old-fashioned, austere baju panjang for the more modern nyonya kebaya. The word kebaya is derived from the Portuguese word kobaya. The short kebaya was more flattering, as it was figure-hugging and shapely, with intricate embroidery at the neckline, sleeves and hem


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Ed Brumby

Simply wonderful, Poro!

Lindsay F Bond

Ples Singsing invites strolling with words worth wondering.

Michael Dom

“I belong to Oceania – that vast expanse of Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia – a fabulously varied scatter of islands, nations, cultures, myths, and mythologies.

"Oceania is also a multiplicity of social, economic, and political systems all in different stages of decolonization, ranging from politically independent nations (Western Samoa, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Nauru, Tuvalu, Kiribati, the Solomon Islands, the Cook Islands) through self-governing nations (the New Hebrides and Niue) to colonies (mainly French and American).

"There are more than 1,200 indigenous languages in Oceania, plus English, French, Hindi, Spanish, and various forms of Pidgin, with which to catch and interpret the past, create new historical and sociological visions, and compose songs, stories, poems, and plays.”

Albert Wendt (ed.), Lali: A Pacific Anthology (Auckland, NZ: Longman Paul, 1980), p. xiii.

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