The Poor Can Sing Off State of Poverty with Pride

Bahay Kubo: For lack of trellis, lush white pumpkin (upo) vines are made to occupy the roof of a nipa hut on this photo.

smileredunhappyToday we make an easy recall of the days when we were little. What came to mind was the classic and popular folk song of one about “our” small house. Some say the original version was in Tagalog entitled “Bahay Kubo” composed by Felipe de Leon:

Bahay kubo kahit munti
Ang halaman doon ay sari-sari,
Singkamas at talong, sigadilyas at mani
Sitaw, bataw patani.

Kundol, patola, upo’t kalabasa
At saka meron pa labanos mustasa
Sibuyas, kamatis bawang at luya
Sa paligid-ligid ay puno ng linga.

Below should be a free translation in English:

My nipa hut, though very small
The plants are diverse
Turnips and eggplants,
Winged beans and peanuts,
String beans, edible pots, lima beans,

White melon, gourd, white pumpkin and squash,
and still there are more, radish, mustard,
Onions, tomatoes, garlic and ginger,
All around are lush sesame plants.

And yet, here’s the Bicolano version, among the many:

An harong ko nipa
Minsan ngani sadit
Manga maritas diyan nasasaray
Singkamas asin talong
Sigarilyas asin mani
Sitaw, bataw patani

Kundol, patola, upo, kalabasa
Sa kadakul-dakul pang labanos
Mustasa, sibulyas, kamatis
Bawang saka luya
Sa palibot may langa.

Here is our limited take on Bicol:

An harong mi
Sadit sana
pero malinigon
Abot sa kusina
Magkakan man kami
perming sa lamesa
An sira mi gulay sana
Kun kamo magduman
Magdara nin asin
Ta maluto kita
nin man laen-laen.

(Please, to one who has the complete lyric, can post below to complete the song.)

Can u gleam how even decades ago, or in our lifetime, the Filipino/ Bicolano are “preconditioned” to accept the state of living in poverty. And how we love (sic) to sing about it with pride!

So ironic and pathetic.


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