I AYUYU

As part of my work at the Guam Museum, I am giving regular tours and educational presentations, and due to the pandemic, most of them are via zoom or via Facebook live. When I taught at UOG, I was constantly talking to students and engaging the community. But this was along expected lines, usually following a syllabus or a textbook. Now that I'm at the Guam Museum, I am always talking to people, engaging them, answering questions and researching to try to be able to provide the best knowledge and information I can in response to community queries. As part of these presentations, I try, as much as possible to include Chamoru poets, musicians and filmmakers, as a way of highlighting not just historical points, but also the creativity and storytelling potential of Chamorus. 

One piece that I have been using regularly is the poem, "I Ayuyu" by Jay Baza Pascua, written and performed for the Chamoru MMA fighter Pat Ayuyu. It represents an attempt to portray power in an ancient Chamoru context, using one of the few indigenous land based animals as a metaphor, namely the coconut crab or ayuyu. 

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 I Ayuyu

Jay Baza Pascua

 

Chamaoli Matao

(The Chamorro high caste)

I manfayi na taotao

(The wise people)

I mantaima’ñao na taotao

(The people without fear)

I mañaina-mu, i manmå’gas gi mattingan

(Your ancestors, the masters of the deep sea)

I mañaina-mu, ma håtsa i gima’Tåga

(Your ancestors, that built the House of Tåga)

I mañaina-mu, ha li’e’ hao på’go

(Your ancestors see you now)

Ma tungo’ i mañaina-mu, metgot gi sanhalom-mu

(Your ancestors know that you are strong within)

Mumongmong i haga’ i mañaina-mu gi tahtaotao-mu

(The blood that flows through your veins)

Hågu i lahen i manmaga’låhi

(You are the son of chiefs)

Mungga maleffa, i ayuyu

(Don’t forget, that it is the coconut crab) 

Ma lassas i niyok ginen i kannai-ñiha

(That skins the husk of the coconut with its claws)

Fa’nu’i i taotao lågu siha na metgot hao

(Show the people abroad your strength)

FÅ’OM! 

(Pound mercilessly!)



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