Whistled poem: Three versions

French poem whistled

My poem in the french original version whistled by Julien Meyer
Linguist and bioacoustician (CNRS) Fascinante parole sifflée!
Of the three versions whistled, I give my preference to this one.
I do not want, in any way, to compare these three versions,
but this one, returns the original French reflection of my poem.

Occitan translation whistled

Variation in the whistled language of Aas from the Occitan translation!
Interpretation performed by Laurent Disnard, member of "Siular d'Aas".
Thanks to Philippe Biu, who teaches this prestigious whistled language
as part of his Occitan course at the University of Pau. Pau which is
the only university in Europe where the whistling language is taught.

Spanish version whistled (silbo)

The spanish translation, whistled by Kiko Correa whistler
and coordinator of the Silbo Gomero teaching project,
on the Gomera island in Canary (thanks to Maria). The
whistled language of the Gomera island is called silbo!
Silbo is an intangible cultural heritage of humanity!
Poetry book
Original version
Poem the mirror

Whistle

This is certainly the first love poem in the world to be whistled! Two versions have been whistled, the french original and the Occitan translation. I thought that even if originally my poem is visual, the way it took with all these translations, took it to other countries... so why not in a whistled language ... whistle for her... without knowing if "translate" her in a whistled language would be possible. I realized that it is.

In the Alpes and Pyrenees, echo of mountains has the virtue of mirror reflections, and whatever the way which bring and send back the words... light or sound waves... her silhouette appears...

More than any other interpretation I would like that the four little verses at the origin of all of this, do not take second place, because it is them, born of the oldest feelings, which are at the genesis of all on this website.

Whistled language

We have from ancient times evidence concerning the whistled languages (Herodotus). In fact, men have always used whistling to communicate, when it became obvious because of the environment (mountains, forests). There are still places in the world where we can meet whistlers, places where people try to preserve this wealth. The nearest are in the Pyrenees in Aas, where whistling is even taught in schools, in the Canaries on the Gomera island where it is called Silbo, in Greece on the Euboea island in Antia, in Turkey. In fact whistled languages are practiced everywhere: Amazonia, Papua, Siberia, China, Atlas etc. It should be noted that in Aas the renewal of the whistled language, is based on the records we own, added by the procedures learned with the silbo in Gomera.

"Too incongruous sentences are the limits of the whistled language. It is not possible to whistle all the phonemes of the spoken language. The same whistled phoneme can represent several phonemes of the spoken language (especially consonants), generating homonyms that are detrimental to comprehension. It is the context that illuminates the meaning of words. If this context is not logical, the recipient may be too confused to understand the message. Thus it will be very difficult or impossible to understand a sentence like: "I have two green herrings swimming in my sink". On the other hand "I caught this morning two trout in the gave, with Pierre I ate them accompanied by a glass of Jurançon", is an easily understandable sentence." (Philippe Biu)

Silbo gomero

We know for sure that the silbo was already practiced by the indigenous people of the Gomera island when the first Europeans arrived. For a long time, and until the middle of the 20th century silbo remained the only mode of communication used on the island for long distance exchanges.

This substitute of the phonological system of the Spanish language is of great interest for linguistic studies. The Gomeros, men and women, whistle exactly what they say, they transpose the spoken language into a whistled language, with the difficulty of reducing vowels and consonants, because not all can be whistled. In this way, one can whistle, more or less easily, any natural language spoken in the world. Silbo has played a vital role in the daily life development on the island's because it allows to send and receive messages instantly over long distances, sometimes as much as five kilometers, avoiding effort and time spent by several hours of walking.

In the second half of the 20th century, the appearance of telephone and the improvement of road communications made it fall into disuse. Then the Canaries saw the rise of tourism, and a new lifestyle dedicated to "modernity", scorning agriculture, livestock and everything related to the past. The practice of Silbo Gomero was reduced to farmers, ranchers and to some young people who refused to stop whistling.

It was only in the mid-eighties, on the proposal of parents' associations, that Silbo Gomero became an extracurricular activity in schools. Due to the enthusiasm for this activity, and because of its high ethnographic, social, cultural and linguistic value, on July 5, 1999, the Canary Islands Government, introduced the whistled language, as a compulsory subject in the educational system of La Gomera as well as literature and Spanish language. As a part of the primary and secondary school curriculum, it is stated that it helps students to learn, appreciate and respect the most important cultural, historical, geographical, natural, social and linguistic aspects of the community.

At a time of constant technological progress, including this communication practice in the island's school programs will have been the most appropriate measure to ensure its preservation. A decision that had a lot of weight for Silbo Gomero, since it was declared by UNESCO in 2009 "Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity".

Currently, the Canary Islands Ministry of Education and Universities, through the Silbo Gomero Education Project, is bringing this heritage, in the classrooms from the first year of primary school to the fourth year of secondary school. Silbo practical courses last 25 to 30 minutes, once a week, in all the schools of the island. There are three teachers on the island (2 women and 1 man), who intervene and share classes.

(Information: Francisco Javier Correa (Kico Correa) Whistler and Coordinator of the Silbo Gomero Teaching Project).

El Silbo Gomero

Hay constancia de que el Silbo ya estaba arraigado en la población aborigen de la Isla cuando llegaron los primeros europeos a la isla de La Gomera. Durante mucho tiempo, y hasta la primera mitad del siglo XX fue el único modo de comunicación a larga distancia con el que contaron los pobladores gomeros. Se emplea como sustituto del sistema fonológico de la lengua española y presenta un enorme interés para los estudios del lenguaje en general y para los de nuestra lengua en particular. Los gomeros y gomeras silban lo mismo que se habla, hay una transposición de la lengua hablada a la lengua silbada, con la dificultad de que hay una reducción en las vocales y consonantes, no todas se pueden silbar. Con este sistema se puede silbar, con mayor o menor dificultad, cualquier lengua natural del mundo.

Este lenguaje silbado ha desempeñado un destacado papel en el desarrollo de la vida cotidiana de la isla, permitiendo enviar y recibir mensajes instantáneamente a grandes distancias, en ocasiones, de hasta cinco kilómetros, ahorrando el esfuerzo del desplazamiento y el tiempo, que en ocasiones puede suponer varias horas de camino.

A partir de la segunda mitad del siglo pasado, comienza a caer en desuso, debido a la aparición del teléfono y la mejora de las comunicaciones por carretera. Además, con el auge del turismo en Canarias, comienza un nuevo estilo de vida que apuesta por la “modernidad” y desprecia el pasado vinculado a la agricultura, a la ganadería y a todo lo que se relacione con él. Desde ese momento, la práctica del Silbo Gomero queda reducida a los agricultores, ganaderos y también a algunos jóvenes que se resistían a dejar de silbar.

A mediados de los ochenta el Silbo Gomero comienza como una actividad extraescolar en los centros educativos, a propuesta de la Asociación de Madres y Padres de Alumnos. Viendo que son muchos los que quieren realizar esta actividad, el Gobierno de Canarias, en La Orden de 5 julio de 1999 introduce por primera vez el lenguaje silbado, como asignatura obligatoria, en el sistema educativo de La Gomera, dentro del área de Lengua Castellana y Literatura, debido a su alto valor etnográfico, social, cultural y lingüístico. Teniendo encaje en el actual currículo de Educación Primaria y Secundaria, que establece que se contribuirá a que el alumnado conozca, aprecie y respete los aspectos culturales, históricos, geográficos, naturales, sociales y lingüísticos más relevantes de la Comunidad

En una época marcada por los permanentes adelantos tecnológicos, incluir esa práctica comunicativa en los planes de estudios de los centros de la isla es la medida más adecuada para contribuir a garantizar su preservación. Esta decisión tuvo gran peso para que el Silbo Gomero fuese declarado por la UNESCO Patrimonio Cultural Inmaterial de la Humanidad en 2009.

Actualmente, la Consejería de Educación y Universidades del Gobierno de Canarias, a través del Proyecto de Enseñanza de Silbo Gomero, lleva al aula este patrimonio desde el primer curso de Educación Primaria hasta el cuarto curso de Educación Secundaria. Las clases prácticas de Silbo son entre 25 y 30 minutos, una vez por semana, llegando a todos los centros escolares de la isla.

(Francisco Javier Correa (Kico Correa) Silbador y Coordinador del Proyecto de Enseñanza de Silbo Gomero)

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Poem translated into 431 languages: here whistled