17. lom, song 1, sung by Rose Mano, Cecilia Kom, Anna Nalo, Vincent Ludaw & Herman Kordu (Malal, Masahet) 1:30 2008/064

Lom are songs of the bush. During a man’s life he will enter the bush with other men for long periods of time, eating only the food of the bush and ocean that is not prepared by women.

 There is an element of fasting, which allows the men to obtain a closeness with the dead, and a power from the spirits. This lom is the first of a series of four recorded songs. Here, the deceased person of the song is dripping blood as he/she is hanging upside down from a tree, as the dead who have met a tragic death are believed to do.

e ka wa notdie kai yo yo tumtum dar

hey you my child I am dripping blood

kai yo yo ureure dong kai yo yo tumtum dar

and I am searching for mother and I am dripping blood

melien a i nes

on this road

18. lom, song 2, sung by Agnes Toti & friend (Bulamue, Masahet) 1:00 2008/075c

Fasting in the bush is not an easy experience–the phrase in the second of this lom song series, ‘our cup has emptied’, equates to ‘our morale has dropped’.

yo kupkup mem wa yo kupkup mem wa

I am shouting on top I am shouting on top

mel kan nung ye

on top of my tree

re a don sa ruh

our cup has emptied

19. lom, song 3, sung by Agnes Toti & friend (Bulamue, Masahet) 0:41 2008/075b

The text of this third lom illustrates the desperation of the hungry initiates, their digging at lightning, a tree and a stone illustrative of a fruitless search for food.

do ngli e yielyiel do ngli e nung yie

let us dig with our fingers the lightning let us dig with our fingers my tree

do ngli e yielyiel do ngli e ngui iot

let us dig with our fingers the lightning let us dig with our fingers my stone

20. lom, song 4, sung by Agnes Toti & friend (Bulamue, Masahet) 1:00 2008/075a

In the final song of this lom series, the brothers, resigned to their hunger, have only the inedible seed of the breadfruit to eat.

wa tsunglik do mangur mando

you my brother we are fasting like nothing else

do ko ian ngui tot

let us eat my breadfruit seed

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