Tag Archives: lyrics

Musical interlude

Here are two of the songs we sang on the bus ride to the conference:

“Come and See What the Lord Has Done” (Second link)
(Leader in italics, followers plain, all in bold)
Come and see — oh
Come and see
Come and see — oh
Come and see

Come and see what the lord has done x2

Boola mubone
Boola mubone
Boola mubone
Boola mubone

Boola mubone Leza cita x2

(The actual Tonga may be closer to “Amuboola mubone Leza kacita,” but what I’ve written above are the parts that you can really hear when it’s being sung.)

I assume that most of you know “Siyahamba/We Are Marching” — I myself have known it since I was a small child, and we sing it a lot at my home church. What I had not before encountered was Tonga lyrics for it. (In fact, when I ran this past my students for a spell-check and translation of some of the words, Barbrah told me that even she only knew it in chimukuwa (white people language, aka English).)

Tulayenda munzila Leza x4
Tulayenda
Tulayenda oo-ooh
Tulayenda munzila Leza
Tulayenda
Tulayenda oo-ooh
Tulayenda munzila Leza

(We are walking in the way of God — and actually, the chimukuwa version we sang was, in fact, “We are walking.”)

Tulapona mungunzula Mwami x4
Tulapona
Tulapona oo-ooh
Tulapona mugunzula Mwami
Tulapona
Tulapona oo-ooh
Tulapona mugunzula Mwami

(We are living in the power of the Lord)

Tulakula mungunzula Leza x4
Tulakula
Tulakula oo-ooh
Tulakula mungunzula Leza
Tulakula
Tulakula oo-ooh
Tulakula mungunzula Leza

(We are growing in the power of God, and tulakula is pronounced “tu-la-gu-la”)

Tuyoosika mungunzula Leza x4
Tuyoosika
Tuyoosika oo-ooh
Tuyoosika mungunzula Leza
Tuyoosika
Tuyoosika oo-ooh
Tuyoosika mungunzula gwe

(We shall reach the power of God
. . .
We shall reach his power.
And tuyoosika is “tu-yo-si-ga,” with a long o in yo, held extra-long.)

If I understood the translation correctly, this one is pretty interchangable: if you’re having trouble making mungunzula fit the music, you should be able to replace it with munzila for any verse except possibly the last one. Leza and Mwami can be swapped at any time, and you can stick -gwe onto the end of any of the verses.

I have more chitonga lyrics in the works, but they still need spell-checking and translation.

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Songs, Some in Tonga

If you are interested in neither music not language, you might want to skip this post.

“Making Melodies in my Heart”

I learned this one from the kids at the innovative school here in Macha. It reminds me of Father Abraham, but a little less lively:

Verse:
Making melodies in my heart (x3)
To the king of kings!

Thumbs up!
(repeat verse with your thumbs up)

Thumbs up! Elbows out!
. . .
Thumbs up! Elbows out! Feet apart! Knees bent! Tongue out! Head tilted! . . . Sit down!

“Heartbeat”
(We sang this one in orientation, but I don’t think I posted it. It’s accompanied by a rhythm of double-thumps against the chest and a clap. I think it would make a really cool round.)

Listen to the heartbeat all around the world,
Pulsing, flowing,
One body, one spirit.

“Luyando Leza Ndupati Maninge”
(More-or-less to the tune of the first verse of “Rock-a My Soul In The Bosom of Abraham”)

Luyando Leza ndupati maninge (x3)
Luyando ndupati

Luyando Jesu ndupati maninge (x3)
Luyando ndupati

Kushoma muli Jesu chibotu maninge (x3)
Kushoma chibotu

(Ndupati is pronounced ‘dupati,’ and on the last line, you elongate the ‘lu’ of luyando, and ndupati is three notes that fall in the same part of the line as ‘soul’ does in English. Kushoma is pronounced closer to ‘goo-shoma,’ and while you can hear the ‘li’ of muli if you know it’s there, I didn’t hear it until Maureen looked over the lyrics I’d written down. Also, chibotu is said ‘jibotu,’ like the ‘gee’ of gee whiz.)

Translation:
The love of God is very wonderful . . . wonderful love
The love of Jesus is very wonderful . . . wonderful love
To trust in Jesus is very good . . . good to trust

(That’s very rough; I think the ndu part is something like an accusative ‘me,’ which would make -pati some kind of verb, I think. Tonga grammar, so far as I can tell, is mostly very simple, but I don’t understand it. It doesn’t help that it includes parts of speech that English hasn’t really had distinctions for during the past several hundred years, and I’m pretty certain that Maureen can’t talk about, for example, object pronouns — though if I ask if the first person in the verb is who’s doing it, and the second person who it’s done to, she has enough comprehension of the way the language works to confirm that I’m right.)

“Leta Maila” (Inyiimbo Zyabakristo #133, BRINGING IN THE SHEAVES)
This is a song that we sing a lot at Macha BICC. I’ve been curious what the words mean, because the tune is really nice (and I like the way we sing it better than any of the stuff I’m finding on youtube, which tends to be either insipid or march-y, whereas ours is just — joyful). While we were at Mboole, I sat down with Maureen and we translated it (ironically, this is how I missed digging up cassava with the others).

Kosyanga cifumo mbuto yaluzyalo,
Syanga isikati akumasuba;
Lindila ciindi cakutebula loko,
Akusega, tuyooleta maila.

(Refrain)
Leta maila, leta maila,
Akuseka, tuyooleta maila;
Leta maila, leta maila,
Akuseka, tuyooleta maila.

Syanga musalala, syanga mumudima,
Utayoowi mayoba ma impeyo;
Twamana milimo, yoonse yamumuunda,
Akuseka, tuyooleta maila.

Mukulila ukamusyangile, Mwami,
Antela moyo ulakupengesya;
Twamana kulila uzootutambula,
Akuseka, tuyooleta maila.

Translation (literal, not poetic):
Plant, (in the) morning, seeds for mercy,
Plant (in the) afternoon, (in the) evening;
Wait (until) the time for havesting much,
With joy*, we shall bring in our maize**.

Bring the maize, bring the maize,
With joy, we shall bring in our maize.

Plant in the light, plant in the dark***,
You shall not fear clouds or cold;
We are finished work, our work for the fields,
With joy, we shall bring in our maize.

In crying, you plant for the Lord,
Though heart may be suffering;
(When) we are finished crying, you shall receive us,
With joy, we shall bring in our maize.

*or ‘smile,’ or ‘love’
**or ‘grain.’ Maureen says that maila is ‘big Tonga,’ that if I went to Mamba and asked for maila, I would be given cassava, that it’s a generic word for the staple grain. I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s a generic word for food, actually; if Zambians haven’t had nshima, they don’t feel like they’ve eaten.
***or ‘the good times, the bad times.’ As an interesting side note, mu-salala (‘in light’, I think) is very like the name of the Holy Spirit, ulya muuya usalala, (where I think u- is a third-person pronoun, although it might not be). You can also just say muuya.

And now for a familiar one (would you like phonetic spelling, too? I can write some up):
“Ndilakondwa” (Inyiimbo Zyabakristo #103, I AM SO GLAD)

Ndilakondwa nkaambo Leza wesu,
Waamba luyando lwakwe MwiBbuku;
Muzigambya zili mu-Malembe.
Cipata** ncakuti wandiyanda.

(Refrain)
Ndakondwa kuti wandiyanda,
Wandiyanda, wandiyanda;
Ndakondwa kuti wandiyanda,
Wandiyanda, mebo.

Wandiyanda, ame ndamuyanda,
Nduyando lwakwamuleta kunsi;
Nduyando lwamucita amfwide,
Ndasinizya kuti wandiyanda.
(Bold for corrections to typos)

Ndabuzigwa inga ndilaambanzi?
Majwi ngenkonzya kuvuwa ngaaya;
Muuya wa-Leza ulaandyambila
Kuti Jesu lyoonse wandiyanda.

Translation:
I am rejoicing* because of my God,
He talks (of) his love in the Book;
Surprise which is in the Scriptures.
That big thing** that he loves me.

I am rejoicing that he loves me,
I am rejoicing, I am rejoicing;
I am rejoicing that he loves me,
He love me, me.

He loves me, and I love him,
His love of me brought him down;
His love of me caused*** him to die,
I’m truly convinced that he loves me.

I am being asked, what shall I say?¥
Words that I am able to answer here;
Spirit of God, you continue to tell me¥¥
That Jesus always loves me.

*It’s possible that ‘glad’ is in fact a better translation, but I think this is an active verb.
**For those of you playing along at home, I’m pretty sure this word is related to ndupati in “Luyando Leza Ndupati Maninge.” Ci- is a noun declension/adjective agreement/thing relating to luyando, love.
***lit, ‘to do.’
¥We spent a lot of time on this line, and I STILL don’t have any idea what the heck inga means, if it means anything. But I can break down ndi-la-amba-nzi: I-(progressive/future tag)-say-what.
¥¥Similarly, u-la-(a)-nd(y)-ambi-(la), You-(progressive)-(?)-to me-say-(?).

And to save you a google, here are the English lyrics, courtesy of this site.
I am so glad that our Father in Heav’n
Tells of His love in the Book He has giv’n;
Wonderful things in the Bible I see,
This is the dearest, that Jesus loves me.

Refrain:
I am so glad that Jesus loves me,
Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me;
I am so glad that Jesus loves me,
Jesus loves even me.

Jesus loves me, and I know I love Him;
Love brought Him down my poor soul to redeem;
Yes, it was love made Him die on the tree;
Oh, I am certain that Jesus loves me!

If one should ask of me, how can I tell?
Glory to Jesus, I know very well!
God’s Holy Spirit with mine doth agree,
Constantly witnessing Jesus loves me.

A few weeks ago we sang “There’s no one, no one like Jesus” at Macha BICC, and I resolved to track down the Tonga words. (Have I mentioned that WordPress gives me information on who searched what and found my blog, and because I like data, I look at it sometimes? My post with the words to this one in English and Ndebele has drawn six different people looking for the words to that song in other languages, which is pretty impressive considering that my next runners-up on google hits are people looking for this blog and people searching “Lusaka,” each of which has three hits. Probably the people looking for lyrics and the people looking for me are more satisfied than the Lusaka people, but one can’t please everyone.) We sang it again last week, and Beatrice, one of my coworkers, does music-stuff at church, so I asked her if she could write down the words for me, so here they are. She also told me that the first stanza is Bemba (one of the other main languages spoken in Zambia), and then the second and third stanzas are Tonga, and then you can sing English if you want to.

Takwaba uwabanga yeesu.
Takwaba uwabanga yee.
Takwaba uwabanga yeesu.
Takwaba uwabanga yee.

Ndayenda yenda koonse, koonse.
Ndalanga langa koonse, koonse.
Ndazinguluka koonse, koonse.
Takwaba uwabanga yee.

Kunyina uyelene a Jesu.
Kuyina uyelene a wee.
Kunyina uyelene a Jesu.
Kuyina uyelene a wee.

Translation is pretty much the same as the English.

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