Tynsa irebä :: Channeling the Green Girl

{September 28, 2008}   where am I?

A basic phrase to learn in any language is “where is….?” You need to be able to ask “Where is my room?” or “Where is the restroom / toilet?”

I realized that I had no word in Miresua for where. I thought that would be easy to fix, but I didn’t count on running head-on into Basque and Finnish grammar. It seems that both Basque and Finnish have several words that can translate to the English word where. They seem best explained by using where and the archaic English words whither and whence. Whither means where to, and whence means where from.

For Miresua, I came up with the word NOSÄ for where — see my related Miresua Conlang post.. This is the static form of where as opposed to whither or whence. This comes from mixing the Basque word NON with the Finnish word MISSÄ.

So, I could ask — Where am I? When translated to Miresua that question becomes — NOSÄ ÄNI ALON? or perhaps, getting the subject from the verb conjugation, the question could be simplified to merely NOSÄ ALON?

I don’t know how to ask “Where is my room?” or “Where is the restroom / toilet?”. But I have a word for where, and that’s a start.


{August 28, 2008}   the moon and sun

And she forgot the stars, the moon, and sun,
And she forgot the blue above the trees,
And she forgot the dells where waters run,
And she forgot the chilly autumn breeze;

From Isabella, or the Pot of Basil by John Keats (1795-1821)

Earlier I mentioned that in Miresua the stars are called AIHÄK. A single star, would be called a AIHÄ. (There is an umlaut over the A, which is important to the spelling and pronuncation. It comes from Finnish.)

What is the moon called in Miresua? Moon is KUILA. This word is composed of the first letters of the Finnish word for moon, KUU, and the Basque word for moon, ILARGI.

What is the sun called? Sun in Miresua is URZENI. This comes from a scramble of the Basque word for sun, EGUZKI, and the Finnish word for sun AURINKO. The word starts and ends with letters that appear in both words.

So in Miresua I’d translate “the moon and sun” to KUILA TA URZENI. That phrase has a nice look to it, if I say so myself.

{August 2, 2008}   and the word is?

The Miresua word for “and” is TA.  I made that word up since the last posting (see my blog posting).  The Basque word for “and” is ETA; The Finnish word for “and” is JA.  I think TA is a good alphabetic compromise for Miresua.

When I make Miresua words I’m limited to the letters in the Basque and Finnish words.  For example, when making the word for “and” my available letters were A, A, E, J, and T.  I couldn’t use another letter, such as perhaps an “S”, if I wanted to.  There are rules to this, even if they are self-imposed.

{July 25, 2008}   silver and gold

You got my heart you got my soul
You got the silver you got the gold

— lyrics from the song “You Got the Silver” by the Rolling Stones on the album Let It Bleed

Silver and gold.  The precious metals.

The Basque word for silver is ZILAR, and the Finnish word for silver is HOPEA.  I mixed up those words and came up with HOLAR for my Miresua word meaning silver.

The Basque word for gold is URRE, and the Finnish word for gold is KULTA.  My Miresua word for gold is ULRE, which admittedly takes more from the Basque word.  Sometimes I chose alphabetic combinations that are not quite evenly taken from my source laguages for aesthetic reasons.

How would you say “silver and gold” in Miresua?  Good question, becuase I don’t know.  HOLAR (and) ULRE, but I haven’t created the word for “and” yet.

{July 18, 2008}   gray eyes

It was April when you came
The first time to me,
And my first look in your eyes
Was like my first look at the sea.

We have been together
Four Aprils now
Watching for the green
On the swaying willow bough;

Yet whenever I turn
To your gray eyes over me,
It is as though I looked
For the first time at the sea.

Gray Eyes by Sarah Teasdale (1884-1933)

The Miresua word for the color gray is ARIS..  My word for eye is BISÄ, hence eyes is BISÄK.  So the tile of this poem, Gray Eyes, becomes BISÄK ARIS.

{July 4, 2008}   red, white, and blue

In honor of the 4th of July, let’s talk about read, white and blue — the colors of the American flag.

In Miresua, the word for red is GIRUN, the word for white is ZULKI, and the word for blue is USIN. I’m quite pleased with these conlang words.

For these three colors, each of the Miresua words start with the same letter as the Basque words which are — GORRI, ZURI, and URDIN. The Finnish words for these colors are PUNAINEN, VALKOINEN, and SININEN.

I was initially surprised to see such lengthy words for colors in Finnish. After some research I learned that the –NEN suffix on each word was an ending meaning it was an adjective. Colors are adjectives, I’ll agree, but I decided to drop the suffix from the Finnish words when constructing my Miresua colors. I wanted shorter and simpler words for colors — as in Basque.

{June 13, 2008}   the cat is black

In my house, there is a black cat. An entirely black cat.

How would one say in Miresua — “the cat is black”? “Black cat” translates to KITSA MELZA, literally cat black. MELZA is the word for black. There is no definite article in Miresua, so there’s no word for “the”. In this example, “is” translates to ODA. ODA is the third person singular conjugation of the verb OLNA which means “to be, to exist”. Miresua is be a Subject-Object-Verb (SOV) language, which is like Basque, but unlike Finnish (and English). Hence “the cat is black” becomes KITSA MELZA ODA.

There are two verbs “to be” in Miresua, as in Basque, and as in Spanish (ser and estar). If the cat being black was a temporary thing, such as a grey cat that rolled in coal dust, then one might instead say in Miresua KITSA MELZA ANGO, using the third person singular conjugation of the other verb “to be” which is ALGO.

By the way, my black cat is named Felix, and he’s a very good cat.

“A book is a version of the world. If you do not like it, ignore it; or offer your own version in return.”
–Salman Rushdie

I don’t usually cite quotes, or repeat funny lines from movies, but I liked this quote. I stumbled upon it today. I cut-and-pasted it here to save the words, and retain the thought. Maybe I’ll have to read a book by Salman Rushdie someday.

O Star (the fairest one in sight),
We grant your loftiness the right
To some obscurity of cloud —
It will not do to say of night,
Since dark is what brings out your light.

—from Choose Something Like a Star by Robert Frost (1874-1963)

The Miresua word for star is AIHÄ. But what are stars, more than one star, the plural of star?

In English we usually make nouns plural by adding “-s” to the end of the word. In Spanish plurals are formed with a suffix of “-s” or “-es”. But in my conlang Miresua I won’t be following this convention.

Miresua takes its grammatical rules from Basque or Finnish, or both if these very different languages agree on something. Simple plurals in Basque are formed by adding a suffix of “-k” or “-ak”. In Finnish simple plurals are formed by adding a suffix of “-t” or “-et”. For Miresua, I’ve decided to add a suffix of “-k” or “-ek” for plurals. I chose to go with a “-k” ending, similar to Basque, because there are several Miresua verb conjugation endings that include a “t”.

Star is AIHÄ in Miresua; so stars, the plural, becomes — AIHÄK.

{April 19, 2008}   pondering channeling

I don’t have a word for channeling in Miresua.  It’s sort of a New Age concept.

Channeling is the act or process of forming a channel or channels.  Channeling is the act or practice of serving as a medium through which a spirit guide purportedly communicates with living persons.  Channeling is the process by which a person becomes a conduit for a deceased person, as someone from an ancient culture, who imparts information about a previous life.

Maybe this green girl is a native speaker of Miresua, and my fictional spirit guide.  Perhaps she is merely the girl on my blog template. 

In Basque channeling may translate to BIDERATU, which also means to guide, lead.  But I’m not sure what channeling would be in Finnish. 

et cetera