Twas Da Night Before Christmas…

by Tania Ginoza on December 23, 2012 · 13 comments

Twas the night before Christmas, Maui style

Twas da night before Christmas

And all true da house, not one creature was stirring, not even one mouse.

Da keikis was moi moi, all snug in their beds,

while visions of mochi wen dance in their heads.

And mama in her tank top and me in my cap,

we wen all cuddle up fo one long nap li dat.

Wen out by da roof, had one big clatter,

I wen run ova dea fo see what was da matter.

Away to da window, I wen run supa fast,

crank open da jalousie fo see what was dat.

Da moon on da front yard wen feel like da kine.

What wen happen next, aaiii, I stay losing my mind.

One mini sleigh and eight reindeer,

one old bruddah driving sans fear.

I wen run outside and den I wen figga,

dis bugga is Santa and he not going boddah.

He wen call out da deer, tell em fo come.

“Now Dancer, Prancer and Vixen.

Try come, Comet!

Cupid, Donner and Blitzen.

To da top of da lanai, da top of da wall.”

Finally, they wen land on da grass, all happy and cheer.

Santa wen open his pack and hand me one beer.

He wen bus out choke gifts and flash me one shaka.

He den wen take off, singing Mele Kalikimaka.

My Pidgin English interpretation of Clement Clark Moore’s A Visit from St. Nicholas.  Pidgin English is a creole language that developed in Hawaii during the plantation days.  

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Jen December 23, 2012

Amazing, girl! You always amaze me with your wonderful skills.

I can’t believe this is a day before christmas already….geez, it seemed like December just started. I hope your christmas eve goes by fast, so you can start opening your gifts!!!! LOL

Reply

Tania December 24, 2012

Thanks Jen. Telling traditional poems and stories in “localease” reminds me of growing up. Way before the internet, we saw this type of story telling with Rap Reiplinger and Frank DeLima. I also remember having a Hawaiian days of Christmas when I was in elementary school but can’t recall who wrote that.

I wanted to do my own adaptation, I’m glad you liked it.

I can’t believe it’s Christmas Eve too, it kind of snuck up on me. Have a wonderful holiday Jen!

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Tiffanie December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas, Tania! Have a wonderful holiday! Tell me, is this Pidgin English a dialect you grew up with yourself, or just picked up on living in Hawaii all this time. It’s so wild to read!

xoxoxo!

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Tania December 24, 2012

I grew up speaking pidgin Tiffanie. My entire high school diary is in pidgin because I wrote as if I was speaking. Now, it comes out only occasionally. Depending on who I’m speaking to or if I”m a little tipsy. It’s pretty easy for me to switch back and forth on autopilot, unintentional and automatic. This was pidgin lite, which is me too. It was very much written in my voice and my intent was also not to take away the original feel and flow of the traditional Christmas poem. I also wanted a local to enjoy it and readers not from Hawaii to still be able to understand what I was saying. Hugs to you too!

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Lori December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas Tania! I love your interpretation! I could just picture everything vividly in my mind as I was reading your description. =0)

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Tania December 24, 2012

Thanks Lori! Are you coming home this holiday or staying on the mainland?

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Lori December 25, 2012

We won’t be back probably til summer, so I enjoy seeing your gorgeous pics and posts. =)

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another jennifer December 24, 2012

Love it! Merry Christmas, Tania.

I won’t be in a tank top here in Maine. Just hoping for some snow!

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Tania December 24, 2012

It’s been a little cooler here than usual (50s in the morning) but yup we can still wear tank tops as we snuggle under the covers.

I would love to see some pics of snow from you. I’ve never experienced snow except when I was too young to remember. I’ve been to the mainland many times during winter but always just miss it. I’ve seen it snow but it would also melt when it hit the ground. I have never seen a winter wonderland (yet).

Merry Christmas!

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lisacng @ expandng.com December 26, 2012

Nice use of Pidgin English! LOL that it comes out when you’re tipsy ;). Hope you had a Merry Christmas! We had snow Christmas Eve, and now some wet/freezing stuff this morning. I wish I was curled up on the sofa with J instead of at work :(.

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Tania December 26, 2012

I’m not tipsy very often but once in awhile.

I wish I was curled up at home too. I’m back at work so you are not alone.

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Kelly :) December 26, 2012

I love this! Super cool! Here’s hoping you had a great Christmas!

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Tania December 26, 2012

I had a very mellow Christmas Kelly.

Merry Christmas to you!

Reply

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