I Am Tired A Swahili Poem
I Am Tired I have arrived, receive me, do not change your feelings, please do agree to my request, I am tired of my lonely state. My heart is racing inside me, for I cannot see your face come quickly, shining one, I, your friend, am tired. What I am telling you is true, listen to me, your lover, I am suffering pain I am tired of waiting for you. I tell you, and it is no joke, my dearest one, I need you; if you possibly can, come to me, I am tired of crying in loneliness.
QUESTIONS • STEP 1 • READ THE POEM AS A GROUP (3 PEOPLE PER GROUP) • STEP 2 • Pick a piece of the poem and respond with these questions • What does this section mean to you? • Make a connection from your personal life.
Group Share IN YOUR GROUP: • Labeling student A, one B, and the other C. • “A”s read their chosen piece of the poem.
Next Step • B and C Students discuss A’s choice by answering the questions (out loud and written) • B will speak First, then C will speak (to 30 Seconds. • What do you think this portion of the poem means? • Why do you think these words might be important to the poem?
Last Step • All “A” Students will share their reasons they chose that piece of the poem thus having “the last word.” Repeat steps for “B” people and “C” people
ORIGINAL SWAHILI POEM • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJLqIw3QsKI • Nimechoka • Nawasilinipokeyasibadiliyakoniyatafadhaliniridhiyayanguhaiinimechoka • Wangumoyowanitangakwasurayokutoenganjoombiyowamuangamwendaniyonimechoka. • Nakwambiya la hakikaNisikiyamuhibukaNaumiyakwamashakakungojeyanimechoka. • Nakujuzasidhihakaliazizanakutakaukiwezanielekakujilizanimechoka.
EXIT SLIP • After you have read the entire poem and analyzing sections. • What words within this poem give you a better understanding? why?
Short Notes of the Poem Use the back ground knowledge you have of the Swahili Culture to help everyone understand translation issues and the overall understanding of the poem and why it is written. • The real quatrain, the clever poem of four lines, has remained a medium of expression for the poets' philosophical rather than amorous thoughts, as it is in most literary cultures where it is used. In Swahili culture, this type of content keeps the quatrain closely linked, as a form of literary art, to the proverb, of which it is an extended and embellished form. It has never betrayed these origins, since the people of East Africa are still inclined to summarize their experience of life in condensed sentences. Proverbs help to teach the young and the inexperienced; the best way to make memorizing easy is to cast it in poetic form. Swahili scholars spend long hours thinking before achieving a perfect form in their thoughts Source: Four Centuries of Swahili Verse by Jan Knappert. Heinemann, London. 1979.