ni’ lhuw’namut – The one that got away

ni’ lhuw’namut
The one that got away
by Harvey George

’een’thu S-hwuts’tus, tun’ni’ tsun ’utl’ lhumlhumuluts’.
I am S-hwuts’tus, and I’m from Lhumlhumuluts’ (Clemclemlutz).

quxulh tu sxwi’em’s tthu sul’elhuhw.
The elders had many stories.

ni’ tsun hekw’me’t tu nuts’a’ sxwi’em’.
I remember this one.

’i’ nilh tse’ ’ul’ kw’unu swe’ nu sxwi’em’—ni’ lhuw’namut.
And this will be my own story—The one that got away.

ni’ ts’u wa’lu q’puthut tthu hwuhwilmuhw kwthu thi syaays ni’ ’u kwu thi’ew’t-hw ni’ ’utl’ shts’uminus.
The people were gathered for a big feast in the longhouse at Stz’uminus.

’i’ ’uwu wa’lu stl’atl’um’us tthu s’ulhtuns tthu hwuhwilmuhw.
And the First Nations people didn’t have enough food.

’i’ ni’ wa’lu ts’elhum’utus kwu swaw’lus ni’ ’utl’ thuq’min
And the young men from Shell Beach heard

kwus ’uwu quxus tthu xslhas tse’.
that there wasn’t enough food.

suw’ qwals kwun’a’uw’ne’ullh, “’ilhe nem’ pi’pi’a’tulh.”
So they said, “Let’s go duck hunting.”

“’uy’ niw’ tl’ulim’ ’un’ sqwal.”
“Great idea!”

ni’ wa’lu ts’elhum’utus kwu na’nuts’a’ stl’i’tl’qulh.
One boy heard them.

ni’ thut-stum, “tth’ihwum tseep!
And he said, “Please!

tl’lim’ ’uw’ nu stl’i’ kw’unus suw’e’ ’utl’ lhwulup.”
I really want to come along with you.”

“’uwu, hwun’ syal’xw ch.
“No, you’re still too young.

’uwu sxuxits ’un’ sul’uthut.”
You don’t know what you’re doing.”

“tth’ihwum! tth’ihwum tseep!”
“Please! Please!”

“’uwu. nan chuw’ skwati.”
“No. You’re too crazy.”

“tth’ihwum! tth’ihwum tseep!
“Please! Please!

tl’lim’ ’uw’ nu stl’i’ kw’unus suw’e’.
I really want to come along.

hwiineem’ tsu tse’.
I will listen.

tth’ihwum tseep!”
Please!”

“ni’ tl’am!”
“That’s enough!”

suw’ thut-s kwu na’nuts’a’, “’i wa’wu wulh saay’ kwun’a’uw’nilh.
So that one person said, “Maybe he’s ready.

m’i ch p’e’ suw’e’ ’utl’ lhnimulh.
You can come with us.

ni’ tse’ ’uw’ sthuthi’.”
It will be okay.”

suw’ ’aalh kwun’a’uw’ne’llh ’u tthu kesulin pout
So they got aboard the gasboat

nem’ tse’ nem’ ’utl’ Sqtheq kwus tse’ pi’pi’a’tulh.
to go to Polier Pass to go duck hunting.

’i’ wulh te’ultsul kwu shni’s tse’ pi’pi’a’tulh.
And they arrived at the place where they would be hunting.

tahw ’uw’ sliqwul.
The sea was calm.

’uwu ’iis pupeel’s.
There was no wind.

suw’ulh hwusaay’s kwu skwul’eshs kwu swaw’lus.
So the young men got their guns ready.

hwun’ xut’u ’i’ wulh kweyuxum tthu pout.
Suddenly the boat moved.

suwq’us ’eelhtun ’i’ nilh kwu stl’i’tl’qulh,
They looked around and it was the boy,

sel’q’tus tthu sq’umul’.
moving his paddle in a circle.

“’unuhwthut thulh!
“Stop that!

ni’ tl’am! ni’ tl’am!”
That’s enough! That’s enough!”

suw’ulh hwusaay’s tthu skwul’eshs kwu swaw’lus, “wutl’uluqw! wutl’uluqw!”
So they got their guns ready, “Pow! Pow!”

suw’ hilum qwus tthu qu-u-ux ma’uqw.
So many ducks fell in the water.

suw’ thut-stum tthu stl’i’tl’qulh,
So they told the boy,

“nem’ ch kwu’elh q’put tthu ma’uqw,
“Gather up the ducks,

’i’ nuw’ush ’u tu lisek, q’p’aythut ch.”
put them in the sacks, and tie them up.”

tl’lim’ niw’ luts’ tthuw’ mu-u-kw’ liseks.
And he filled all their sacks up.

ni’ wulh lhatsthut ’i’ tl’lim’ ’uw’ wulh xuytl’that.
It got dark and it got cold.

suw’ thut-s tthu na’nuts’a’, “’uwe ’u tst kwu’elh nem’ut t’akw’?”
And he said, “We’re not going home?”

ni’ wulh qux tthu shun’tsus.
They had a lot of ducks.

wulh nem’ hun’lhelt ’eelhtun.
Then off they went back to shore.

suw’ yuthustum kwu stl’i’tl’qulh,
So they told the boy,

“nem’ ch kwu’elh tsumstuhw tthu shun’tsutst,
“Go pack up our catch,

’aalhstuhw ’u tu tluk.”
and put it in the van.”

wulh lhets ’i’ wulh yut’at’ukw’,
It was dark when they were going home,

’ula’ulh ’eelhtun ’u tu tluk.
riding in the van.

wulh qwal tu na’nuts’a’,
And one of them said,

“’etsune! nutsim’ ’a’lu kwun’s theq’t tthunu sxun’u?
“Yikes! Why are you poking my leg?

’unuhwthut thulh!”
Stop that!”

“’uwu ’een’thu’us!”
“It’s not me!”

hwun’ xut’u ’i’ hwi’ nilh tthu na’nuts’a’,
Then a bit later another person said,

“’utsune! nutsim’ ’a’lu kwun’s theq’t tunu t’eluw’?”
“Yikes! Why are you poking my arm?”

“’uwu ’eenthu’us!
“It’s not me!

’uwu ch qwulhuts-thuhw!”
Don’t blame me!”

mukw’ ’eelhtun niw’ theq’tum.
So they all got poked.

qulnuhwus ’eelhtun tthu stl’i’tl’qulh.
They were angry at the boy.

wulh hun’umutnamut.
They managed to get home.

suw’ yuthustum kwu stl’i’tl’qulh,
And they told the boy,

“nem’ ch kwu’elh qw’imut tu shun’tsutst.”
“Go unload our catch then.”

sisuw’ t’en nem’ ’u kwu tluk.
And he disappeared into the van.

wulh ts’elhum’utus ’eelhtun tu kwukwtsem’,
And they heard a scream,

“eee eee! eee eee!”.
“Eee eee! Eee eee!”

“ni’ ch ’a’lu hwi’ tsukwsta’mut?
“What ever is happening to you?

hay thulh! hay thulh!”
Stop that! Stop that!”

tl’e’ wulh qul’et kwetsum.
And then he screamed again.

“eee eee! ’e’ut hwun’ huli!
“Eee eee. It’s still alive!

’e’ut hwun’ huli!”
It’s still alive!”

suw’ lemutus ’ula’ulh ’u tu tluk.
So they looked in the van.

sts’uts’e’ tu ma’uqw ’u tu sxuy’uss.
There was a duck sitting on his head.

lhakw’tum tu sxuy’uss.
It was pecking at his head.

“hwun’ huli!”
“It’s still alive!”

sum’e’kwulh tu ma’uqw ’u tthu t’eluw’s.
The duck had an injured wing.

niw’ xwchenum ’ul’ huye’.
It ran off.

niw’ wa’lu mel’qtus, ’uwu niis q’ep’utus tu lisek.
He must have forgotten to tie up the sack.

hwun’ skwati ’ul’.
He was still just crazy.

hwuw’e niis p’ulh tu sil’anums.
He hadn’t matured yet.

suw’ neetum tu stl’i’tl’qulh ’u kw’ “ma’uqw”.
So they nicknamed the boy “Ducks”.

ni’ kwulh ’usup’ tunu sqwal.
That’s the end of my story.

tl’lim’ ’uw’ thu’it tu sqwals tthu sulewe’ s’ul’eluhw.
The words of the esteemed elders were really true.

nilh ’uw’ sht’ees tthu thi lelum’.
That’s how it is in the longhouse.

yath chuw’ ts’i’ts’uwa’tul’ ’u tu s’ulhtun.
You always help each other with the food.

“ts’i’ts’uwa’tul’ tseep mukw’ lhwet,” xut’u sulewe’ s’ul’eluhw.
“Everyone helps each other,” our esteemed elders would say.

ni’ hay. huy tseep q’u.
The end. Thank you.

CREDITS

Story and voice by Harvey George.

With translation assistance from Ruby Peter

Edited by Donna Gerdts

Art work by Valerie N. Bob

Audio and Video by Donna Gerdts

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Story: TheOneThatGotAway

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