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Poetry

The Land of Our Lives

By Magin Mario Balthazaar
Translated from Sri Lanka Portuguese by Hugo C. Cardoso
This poem praises the people, the land, and the culture of the Sri Lanka Portuguese Burgher community.
Listen to Magin Mario Balthazaar read "Tééra nósa viida" in the original Sri Lanka Portuguese
 
 

The fish sing over here,
The fish sing.
If you go to the seashore
You will hear them.

The shrimp fishermen
Are catching crabs.
Let’s buy some fish
And live the good life.

What’s the name of our land?
It is Batticaloa.
How beautiful is it?
So beautiful
Is our land, Batticaloa!

Where all the káfriinha1 and baila2
First came to be,
We also dance the lancers.
We play the rabana3 until its skin bursts,
The violin and guitar until their strings break.


1. A typical dance and musical tradition of the Sri Lanka Portuguese Burgher community.

2. A popular Sri Lankan musical style historically connected with the traditions of the Portuguese Burgher community.

3. A traditional Sri Lankan drum played with the hand.


“Tééra nósa viida” © Magin Mario Balthazaar. Translation © 2021 by Hugo C. Cardoso. All rights reserved.

English Sri Lanka Portuguese

The fish sing over here,
The fish sing.
If you go to the seashore
You will hear them.

The shrimp fishermen
Are catching crabs.
Let’s buy some fish
And live the good life.

What’s the name of our land?
It is Batticaloa.
How beautiful is it?
So beautiful
Is our land, Batticaloa!

Where all the káfriinha1 and baila2
First came to be,
We also dance the lancers.
We play the rabana3 until its skin bursts,
The violin and guitar until their strings break.


1. A typical dance and musical tradition of the Sri Lanka Portuguese Burgher community.

2. A popular Sri Lankan musical style historically connected with the traditions of the Portuguese Burgher community.

3. A traditional Sri Lankan drum played with the hand.


“Tééra nósa viida” © Magin Mario Balthazaar. Translation © 2021 by Hugo C. Cardoso. All rights reserved.

Tééra nósa viida

Peesi takantáá ákii,
Peesi takantáá.
Máára bóórda péértu andáá
Ovii poy juntáá

Kambráám tapeyáá jeentis
Kangrera tapeyáá.
Peesi lotomáá
Nóóspa boom viida loacháá

Kii nóómi nósa tééra?
Áka Bátikalo tééra.
Kii buniitu?
Boom buniitu
Nósa Bátikalo tééra!

Káfriinha bááyla tudu
Oondi yakunsáá,
Léénsas taam nóós lobayláá.
Rábáána lodááy pééli parumpa
Violin guitar lodááy váárva pakevráá.


“Tééra nósa viida” © Magin Balthazaar. All rights reserved.

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