Suau love poem
Tautau Mira eai ne
I Hemala egu libaliba lolona
Na iamo Heula, Abo itau yamui
Inata ohi ohina, a Gadosisi Em
→ French poem ←
My love poem is here translated into Suau (Iou), exactly into pure Suau, a Malayo-Polynesian language, from the Papuan tip, spoken in the Milne Bay Province in Papua New Guinea, by about 15 000 people.
Suau is divided into many dialects such as: Daui, Dahuni, Fife Bay, Leileiafa, Sinaki, Gadaisu, Gaidasu, Bona Bona, Bonarua, Lausaha. It is spoken on the island of Suau, on the islands of Bonarua and Baibaisika, east of Suau, as well as on the mainland in Savaea, Modewa, Koukou, Saga'aho, Navabu, Ipulai, etc.
The Daui spoken between Isuisu and Dahuni, is the closest of its dialects.
The vocabulary of the Suau language is very rich and it is unlikely that it has been fully inventoried. Moreover, some words are so precise that they have no equivalent in European languages.
There is cultural and linguistic links between Suau and Bohutu, indeed several waves of migration from Bohutu have settled in Suau.
The Suau have always been in maritime contact to exchange with their neighbors, and these commercial links, followed by inter-tribal marriages, have favored exchanges between languages and cultures.
First a commercial language, Suau has become the vehicular language of a large number of Logea, Sariba and Eareba speakers. Moreover, these languages contain many Suau words.
Missionaries helped make Suau the dominant language. The first arrived in the last quarter of the 19th century.
At the very end of this 19th century when they had enough knowledge of the language, they could begin to teach and evangelize in Suau.
Being a vehicular language, besides the advantage of making the language more important, is also a factor of change, and of deterioration. Non-native speakers tend to transform Suau by bringing new words, changing certain meanings etc.
The version shown here is in pure Suau (standard).