Category Archives: Cree

Cree language words with translation

takwākin masinipīsinowina – fall pictures

Here are some fall pictures I’ve taken in the last couple of years. I just wanted to share.

sakahk – bush
mistikwak – trees
mistik – tree
pīsim – sun
mīskanāw – road
mīskanās – little road
sīpiy – river
sīpīsis – small river or stream
sakahikan – lake

 

 

Life is like a dance you learn as you live

There is a song title that inspired the following quote, you may know what it is.

pimācihowin tāpiskoc nīmīhitowin kikāti kiskīthihtīn kāti pimātisīn
Life is like a dance you learn as you live

Thank you for visiting.

mistāpiw namīhtāw – Bigfoot has left tracks

Going through my Facebook feed this morning, I noticed a shared post by Jarome Stpierre and it showed a picture and a video of somebody leaving huge tracks. I was intrigued and decided to share with you what his father has taken footage of.

Seeing tracks like this must be awesome. I can only imagine what the feeling was like to see something like that. After hearing stories about wihtikō (wendigo from other bands) from nimosōm – my grandfather, I would always be on the lookout for strange tracks or any anomaly whatsoever. Unfortunately, I have never seen anything remotely resembling a mystery such as the tracks posted above.

I have seen bears that looked like a humanoid of some kind and realized that it was a bear upon closer inspection. I have even seen a bear from afar on the side of the road and told my son, “Charles, look, that’s a bear over there.” Only for the bear to fly up to the trees because it was a raven. He had a good laugh, as I laughed with a red face (I didn’t tell him I was embarrassed).

My eyes may not be the best proof of anything. I would like to find something as tangible as the tracks from Jerome’s father. Maybe I will go for a walk today and look for something.

mistāpiw namīhtāw – Bigfoot has left tracks

wihtikō

nimosōm

 

1500 – kihci-mitāhatomitanaw mīna niyānan mitāhatomitanaw

The First Nation Stories Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/firstnationstories/)  recently reached over 1500 likes. It has been a long time coming. I appreciate all the followers from the beginning and to the new ones the page gets each week.

I hope I said and wrote it right.

From the words of Cree Teacher, Simon Bird – kinanāskomitin = I thank you/I am thankful for you/I am grateful for you (#CreeSimonSays).

kihci-mitāhatomitanaw mīna niyānan mitāhatomitanaw – 1500

mīna kihtwām – until next time

 

nitīm – my dog

nimosōm – my grandfather Charlie Ross

I remember when I was about 10 or 11 years old and nimosōm – my grandfather told me that he used to have a dog team. It was fascinating to hear about the places he travelled with his team. It was places nearby but hearing it as a young boy, it sounded so much more glamorous and seemed to be in faraway places.

It was all well and good when he told me about what he used to do, but he started telling me that he was planning on getting a NEW dog team. I remember being very excited about it and thought I’d be able to see it happen and maybe try it myself the next winter.

He was able to get a big male and a female husky. We were in Pesiw Lake that summer when he acquired the dogs and we moved them to Hall Lake in the early fall. By the next spring, there was pups, many with big feet that nimosōm said, meant that the dogs were going to be big.

I picked out a puppy myself and it turns out nimosōm picked the same one. piyakwan awa kōtinahk, kitīminow awa – we picked the same one, this is our dog. I honestly didn’t know how that was going to work, but nimosōm seemed happy about it and I didn’t ask how it would work if he had to go back to the trapline.

It might have been a week or two later that the situation did not matter. I went for a walk with my friends and near a culvert lay a dead puppy. I was not sure at the time, but it kind of looked like mine. I was upset; however, I hid my feelings from my friends and just went home. I’m glad they didn’t ask why I had to go home, back then; we hid our feelings from each other because only we thought only little kids cried.

Later that evening, it turned out that my puppy had gone missing. A man we called mahkistikwān – big head, had killed and ditched it near the culvert where my friends and I saw it. It was very disheartening for me. I have never had a dog since, not because it was so heartbreaking, but because I decided that maybe it’s too much responsibility.

nimosōm – my grandfather

mahkistikwān – big head

atim – dog

achimosis – puppy (little dog)

nitīm – my dog

kitīm – your dog

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

sākāstīw – Sunrise

It has been awhile since I have seen a sunrise.  I took this picture from my doorstep because it was too late to get down to the lake to take a beautiful  landscape type picture. Hall Lake has some great sunrise picture opportunities.

mithokīsikanisik – You all have a nice day

 

 

kita kimowan nipahaci kōhkominakīsīs – it will rain if you kill a spider

When I was a nāpīsis – a boy, nōhkom – my grandmother, used to tell me not to kills spiders or it would rain. Because of my wild imagination and the fact that it was nōhkom who told me, I was very careful about not killing spiders.

 

nōhkom – my grandmother

nāpīsis – boy

 

Image by kalhh from Pixabay

Image by Robert Balog from Pixabay

Old Tree behind my Parents House

My parents house

Around 1982, when my parents moved us from La Ronge to Hall Lake, our house and area was a new place to explore for this 8-year-old at the time. There were many trees near and around the house and nipāpā – my father spend days cutting trees down and digging out the tree stumps. I was too small to help with that, but I did haul what scraps I could. I wish I had pictures I could show.

Actual picture of tree before it fell, tāpwī.

There was a mistik – tree, that caught my eye earlier on because it stood out among the mītosak – popular trees behind the house, it was an ithināhtik – black spruce. I immediately noticed the tree had long branches at the bottom and made a natural umbrella, my sisters and I ran to this tree to get away from the rain many times.

Actual picture of tree before it fell, tāpwī.

During the winter of the year, nipāpā had trapped and skinned either a nikik – otter or ocīk – fisher. My memory is a bit fuzzy but anyway, he had thrown the skeleton of the animal on the branches of the ithināhtik, maybe about 3 metres high. Over the years, the bones got higher and higher until I completely forgot about them. When I did remember many years later, I could not make it out. Not a trace. I wondered if it was dragged away by ravens and crows or by the squirrel that made the tree it’s home.

Actual tree after it fell, tāpwī

In late July of this year, 2019, the tree finally fell after a storm. Right away I went to the tree when I found out and looked for the bones that were thrown onto the branches. I did not find the skeleton. I was kind of disappointed but considering its been 37 years, there was little chance it would still be there. I just thought it would be a good story to tell my children as I held up the skeleton, but that is not to be. Like the readers of this blog, it can only be imagined.

 

nipāpā – my father (this is how we say it in our “colonized” reserves).

mistik – tree

mītos – popular tree

ithināhtik – black spruce

nikik – otter

ocīk – fisher