Music Of The Waters - online book

Sailors' Chanties, Songs Of The Sea, Boatmen's, Fishermen's,
Rowing Songs, & Water Legends with lyrics & sheet music

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Music of the Waters.                 825
of historical occurrences. One of these is commemorative of the principal events that happened during Captain Cook's visit, and which, excepting a little exaggeration, is tolerably correct.
The Tongese have many short songs, which they call Tow Alo, and sing when they are paddling their canoes, the strokes of the paddle being coincident with the cadence of the tune. They are very frequently sung on leaving Vavaoo, whilst paddling out of the inlet. The following is an example of the words and an English translation :
Tongese Water-Song. Oiaooe ! gooa mow teoo felow, Ca toogoo M6onga-lafa, bea mo
Talao ! Gooa te leoli ger nofo; coliai tenne
aloo? Ca t6ogoo Vavaoo, m<5e m<5too lalo, Licoo o'ne, Moe Vaoo-aca, Moe Tlalla-vy' gi Maccapapa, Mattal6co, mo fanga myile, A'na a To6taw-i, bea Mofo6e, Iky' Seoo too gi lu lufoanga, Yio hifo gi he felow ta fanga, Toogoo he foogi hea a Tlafoolooh6w Ger vala he gnafi-gnafi a Toofooa mo
English Version. Alas ! we are entering upon our
voyage, By leaving Moonga-lafa and Tal6w ! Anxious am I to stay ; who can wish
to go? Departing from Vavaoo and her
neighbouring isles, And Licoo-one, and Vaoo-aca, The road of springs near Maccapapa,
Mataloco and the myrtle plain, The cave of Tootaw-i, the beach of
Mofooe'e, No longer can I stand upon high
places And look downwards on the fleet of
small canoes. We must leave the crimson gnatoo
of Tlaf&olooh6w, To wear the coarser mats of Toofooa
and Kaoo !
Most of their song-words are in the Samoan language. The following is a specimen of the paddling-songs, which really form the principal water-music of the Tonga Islands:

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