Blackfoot love poem

Saapia'tsis

Kitsitssoyottaksin

Niitsowa'pii ani ninihkssin

Kitaakanoa'kamssit, aakssayinako,

Sakowoohtsi "Kitsiikakomimmo"..

Translated into Siksiká by Blackfoot language

Explanations

Saapia'tsis
Mirror or reflection

Kitsitssoyottaksin
Your reflection on the (water or mirror)

Niitsowa'pii ani ninihkssin
Is my most beautiful (poem or song)

Kitaakanoa'kamssit - aakssayinako
But you must be quick - it will disappear

Sakowoohtsi- Kitsiikakomimmo
It my last - I love you!

Original version
Poem the mirror

Blackfoot language

Here my love poem in Blackfoot. The Pied Noir language (Blackfoot, Blackfeet, Blood, Kainaa, Peigan, Piegan, Siksikáí’powahsin, Siksiká, pikanii, Niitsipussin, Niitsipowahsin), is an Algonquian language spoken by about 5,000 Niitsítapi, with only 1,000 of them, often old who know it well.

Blackfoot is an Algonquin language of the northern High Plains, currently spoken on three reserves (Peigan and Blood (southern Alberta) and Blackfeet (northwestern Montana). The language of these three reserves can be distinguished by three dialects: Piegan (Peigan), in the Peigan and Blackfeet reserves, Blood (Kaina) in the Blood reserve, and Siksika in the Blackfoot reserve.

One of the characteristics of this language is that it is polysynthetic, that is to say that the words are often very long (many morphemes) and could correspond to whole sentences in other languages. Another characteristic is that of genres (words representing inanimate or animated things for blackfeet people).

If the total number of speakers has only decreased, for the thousand people who still speak the language, and in some places, Blackfoot remains their language of communication. In any case, it is clear that since the 1960s the number of Blackfoot speakers has been decreasing. This translation comes from the Blood tribe reserve blackfoot in Alberta.

The Blackfeet

The Blackfeet (Siksikaitsitapi, autonyms Niitsitapi (real people) and Siksikaitsitapi (speaking black foot)), are the regrouping of three groups (Siksikas, Piikani and Kainai) speaking the blackfoot language. Their territory is located both in the United States (northern Montana) and in Canada (southern Saskatchewan and Alberta), and it is on these territories that today are their reserves.

A bit of history: Blackfeet people who were very often at war with their neighbors, found with them, horses and firearms. They led a nomadic life, sheltered under Tipis and hunted deer and bison.

Crowfoot, Blackfoot chief (1821-1890):

What is life?
It is the flash of a firefly in the night.
It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime.
It is the little shadow which runs across the grass
And loses itself in the sunset.

Algonquian languages
Cree - Lenape - Mahican - Odawa - Ojibwa - Abenaki - Cheyenne - Atsina - Arapaho
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Poem translated into blackfoot (482 languages)