Tz'utujil love poem
Akayib'aal chupaam patz'atiik
Qas jub'el pach'un tziij
Tajapunk'a aq'iij, xin q'axk'a
¡Xara jun k'isb'al "katinuajo"!
Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala sede central
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Here the love poem in the Tz'utujil language (Tzutujil, Zutuhil, Zotonil, Santiago Atitlán Tzutujil, Zutuhil, Eastern Tzutujil, Tzutuhil, Tzutujil Oriental).
This eastern Mayan language of the Quichean branch (close to Kʼicheʼ, Cakchiquel, Sacapultec and Sipacapa), is spoken in the departments of Sololá and Suchitepéquez, in the southern region of Lake Atitlán in Guatemala.
There are three or four main variants, the one presented here is part of the Eastern Tzutujil and comes from Santiago Atitlán. In some municipalities, Tz'utujil remains the spoken language and Spanish the extra-community language of exchange.
With its 50,000 speakers, Tzutujil is not the most widely spoken of the Mayan languages in Guatemala; Mam, Quiché, Quekchi and Cakchiquel have a much larger number of speakers.
The situation in the cities and in the countryside is not the same! In the cities bilingualism with Spanish is more frequent than in the countryside, and the population is more of a mixed race population, an indigenous-Spanish mixture, the Ladinos.
The Ladinos often speak only Spanish, and the non-business contacts with their native counterparts are infrequent.
Tzutujil is just a language that is spoken in family or celebrations, and those who reach a higher social level, tend to forget their mother tongue.
The Tz’utujil Mayas have an oral ancestral tradition of songs and poetic texts that are in line with what the Popol Vuh describes, this Kiché codex from the time of the conquest.
The Tz'utujils are one of the many Mayan peoples of Guatemala. They live in the southern region of Lake Atitlán.
Their establishment in this territory is old and seems to date back to the post-classical Mayan period.
Tz'utujil weaving, painting and sculpture are renowned, and they still retain traces of their culture. If their Hispanization is already very real, they have adapted it.
Their songs, which convey the oral tradition, are a reminder to ancestors, creation, traditions and beliefs, to which are mingled those brought by a Catholicism that they have been able to adapt.
These songs are a way of keeping the memory and the breath of their culture alive ... and if the Spaniards brought them their God, the shaman for them retains an important place, and their ancient customs remain the model to follow.
For them, for example, Santiago Atitlán that they call "the navel of the face of the earth", is at the center of a world traversed by their Gods.