Ambae love poem
A gelasi tititro
A nunumu aia hini lo gelasi titiro
Mo uliana- aia u karea seleti na nongu uliuli vunuhira
Ku hatu lae taro mo tuwai, a uliuli hini vae ne sala
Aia a nongu uliuli rovinaki "Nu langwa maiko!"
→ French poem ←
Love poem translated into Western Ambae (Nduindui, Duindui, Duidui, Walaha, Kwalaha, Opa), one of the Ambae dialects, from Ambae Island in Vanuatu.
Ambae is a South Oceanian language, eastern Vanuatu, spoken altogether by perhaps 9,000 people.
This language can be divided into two main dialect sets, Western Ambae and Eastern Ambae. If these two varieties have differences in vocabulary and pronunciation, they remain inter-comprehensible.
In the villages all the children learn Ambae as their first language.
For speakers who leave their island and go to live in Port Vila or other places in Vanuatu, intermarriage and the use of Bislama, the official language, the many years of not being fluent in their language , inevitably transforms it.
Ambae Island is a volcanic island located in the northeast part of the chain of islands that make up Vanuatu, east of the largest of the islands (Espiritu Santo).
The island is very steep since it is not very large and the summit of a volcano occupies its center (awakened in 2017). It is mainly the coastal strip which is inhabited.
The topography of the island with this peak at its center makes it very rainy, with runoff that can be torrential, all the way to the sea.
For the ancients, it was Takaro who created the island, then called Tambaeko. Later, after Bougainville which will land on the island, James Cook following a confusion will call it Ova (Aoba).
It was at the independence of Vanuatu (1980) that the island took the name of Ambae (in connection with the word Tambaeko).
On Ambae, the people of the coastal zone live by fishing from canoes and work in cocoa and coconut plantations for copra.
In the interior area, the main resources are cocoa trees, which dominate, and coconut trees. Bananas, walnuts, cabbage, cassava, sweet potatoes, yams and kava are also grown. Craftsmanship is also a significant resource and contributes to trade with neighboring islands.