The Life of Lam-ang (an Iloko epic) - Page 9 of 16

Complete Text (in English)

Having gone up the hut:
Father, to whom I owe my life,
Please bring out the golden chair

Plated with bulaoan gold
Made by people from the north.

And everyone having taken a seat:

Mother Unnayan, to whom I owe my life,
Please cook some rice
On the pot for one.

A pot of ground-dwelling dwarves
Which can allow for others on their way
To share of its inexhaustible bounty

For it is only right
That we prepare food
For brave-man Don Lam-ang

Father to whom I owe my life
Please catch the caponed rooster
Fattened for my older brother Lam-ang.

The food cooked, they sat down
To eat at the dining table
Lam-ang and Ines Cannoyan ate

From the same plate with their fingers.
Where Cannoyan pinched her food
There also did Lam-ang.

And where Lam-ang sipped his soup,
There also did Cannoyan.
The luncheon over, Cannoyan said:

Mother Unnayan,
Please pick some fine betel leaves
Which smile when approached

So we may offer a chew
To older brother Lam-ang.
Mother, please roll, too,

Some tabarcan tobacco
Planted east of Cagayan.

This over, her parents spoke thus:

Our son Lam-ang, please tell us now
Why you came;
What you wish, what you desire.

The white rooster replied thus:
We have come to compete for the devotion
Of your daughter, Ines Cannoyan.

Respected elders,
Subject to your judgment,
We come to unite our families.

This is what it said, the yellow-legged rooster.
And the old man and woman replied thus:
Our son Lam-ang

If you can fulfill
All that we assign to you
You can marry our Cannoyan;

If your means allow you
To match the wealth
We shall enumerate for you.

The yellow-legged hen said:
If what’s what you say, respected elders,
Lam-ang is prepared to meet

All your desires and requirements.
My son Lam-ang,
Look around you.

Let the footpath be of gold
At the middle of the yard;
The butchering blocks, too.

Learn this Filipino word:

waláng bahid