GAZAL 10X10X10

©DEV VIRAHSAWMY EK ICJM

01

LAPRIYER

Senier Zezi, Saraswati gid mwa,
Ekler mo lespri mahabachara.
Ed mwa ranz enn pon, ed mwa kraz miray!
Ed mwa fann ar bann mahabachara!
Bhagavad-Gita, Labib ek Koran
Ed nou pou konbat mahabachara
Me nou tro gopia pou konpran tousa;
Akoz sa nou res mahabachara.
O Senier Zezi! O Saraswati!
Ed Dev reedik mahabachara.

06.01.20

02

LASOURS

Mama-Papa Kreater liniver,
Lasours lavi, ekout mo lapriyer.
Ou zarden finn vinn enn gran simitier.
Mem mo antor, ekout mo lapriyer.
Olie partaze, mo zis konn plen pos.
Mem mo’nn fane, ekout mo lapriyer.
Kan zanfan plore mwa mo pa tande.
Mem mo koupab, ekout mo lapriyer.
Mama-Papa tou zanfan lor later,
Dev sipliy ou, ekout mo lapriyer.

06.01.20

03

MO PEI

Enn ti lil kreol, refiz imigran,
Ena enn mesaz iniversalis.
Imigran Lafrik, Lerop ek Lazi
Pe viv enn kiltir iniversalis.
Nou finn ranz enn lang ar parol partou
Pou konstrir bann pon iniversalis.
Nou fer lamizik ar bann enstriman
Ki sant for mesaz iniversalis.
Nou pa tipti Frans ousa tipti Lenn;
Nou pei bann dev iniversalis.

06.01.20

04

NOU SEGA

Li ti ne isi dan pei Moris
Kan jaz ti pe ne dan pei Memfis.
Li pa’nn konn Coltrane ousa Miles Davis
Ek lezot zean dan pei Memfis.
Me li’nn konn Tifrer ek so frer Fanfan
Zean dan Moris, pa pei Memfis.
So ravann sorti dan pei Lazi;
So jembe Lafrik pa pei Memfis
Me kan lagam anflam later Moris
Zanfan dev pa rapel pei Memfis.

06.01.20

05

ANOU PARTAZE

Nepli konn done, nek konn plen karne.
Aret ramase! Anou partaze!
Amizir manze lapeti monte;
Zame rasazie. Anou partaze!
Pos pe defonse telman li ranpli
Ar gou pa ase. Anou partaze!
Nou bliye gete si vwazen ere;
Roupi ki koze. Anou partaze!
Solidarite! Solidarite!
Sa ki dev ole. Anou partaze!

07.01.20

06

PA PAREY, EGAL

Pa bizen parey, mo bien foupamal,
Pou nou de egal. Pa parey, egal.
Dan nou diferans ki ena zoli;
Tou parey dimal. Pa parey, egal.
Sak varyete fler ena so bote;
Sak kiltir parey. Pa parey, egal.
Dimoun tou kote zot bien diferan
Me ena mem drwa. Pa parey, egal.
Zom, fam pa parey; zot bien diferan
Me bann dev pe dir, “Pa parey, egal.”

07.01.20

07

KONN TOU SAN APRANN

Dan pei beni, dimoun dan mangann;
Zot exper dan tou, konn tou san aprann.
Zot koz lang Kreol, zot kwar Franse sa;
Zot kwar zot bileng, konn tou san aprann.
Zot mepriz istwar, ki pou fou ar sa;
Zot koz gran koze, konn tou san aprann.
Pa bizen siyans, ki pou fou ar sa;
Ze konn, ze debrouy! Konn tou san aprann!
Zot bizen senbol lor zot bilten vot.
Bann dev ki foser! Konn tou san aprann!

08.01.20

08

ZOT PREFER NENPORT

Diskision lor kriz pe tap nou laport,
Me bann gran gayar zot prefer nenport.
Dife dan langka, lamer mont lor pie;
Me zean kot nou zot prefer nenport.
Manze pe manke, lavi menase;
Lider bienneme zot prefer nenport.
Violans pe touy fam, zanfan inosan
Me bann gran bankie zot prefer nenport.
Bizen efase e rekoumanse!
Olie ekout dev, zot prefer nenport.

08.01.20

09

LINET ROUPI LOR LIZIE

Asmatik mari, lesiel pe brile;
Nou prefer linet roupi lor lizie.
Poumon finn kole; lagorz amare;
Nou prefer linet roupi lor lizie.
Flanbwayan anflam; larivier gagn swaf;
Nou prefer linet roupi lor lizie.
Katora vid net; deksi finn rouye;
Nou prefer linet roupi lor lizie.
Salam kamarad! Salam mo fami!
Dev prefer linet roupi lor lizie.

08.01.20

10

SALAM

Enn ti lil Kreol Losean Endien
Ti ouver lebra ospitalite
Pou bann imigran sorti tou kote
Pou ki zot kiltiv ospitalite.
Me lizie bouse ar linet roupi
Zot finn prefer touy ospitalite
Pou ranz enn kavern ar bann lengodor,
Touf respirasion ospitalite.
Ar leker fermal, ar larm dan lizie,
Dev dir twa Salam, Ospitalite.

08.01.20

DETRWA POEM ENDIEN AN MORISIEN

TEX SOURS: THE HARPERCOLLINS BOOK OF ENGLISH POETRY
EDITED BY SUDEEP SEN (2012)

01

LEARNING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE BY ADITI MACHADO – PAGE 027

LER PE APRANN ENN LANG ETRANZER

Ou pe sey dekrir ou lekor.
Ena bann trou vid kot ti bizen ena lapo, lezo, mix ek lagres.
Koumadir dimal si mo la vini.
Organn perdi bann pou enn poet.
‘Ti’ena enn galan arme ar kouto. Ti’ena loraz.
Li ti tay-tay mwa. Lerla enn gran dimoun ti vini, anbras mwa,
geri mwa e refer mwa koze’.
Ousa:
Ou pe dibout lor enn ros omilie larivier desene.
Divan ou ena enn ros tro lwen ki briye kouma bistouri.
Rafal fons lor ou ar laraz.
Dilo feros ti kapav aval ou kouma feyaz.
Lagorz amare ziska adrenalinn monte:
enn nouvo mo tonbe kouma enn gro brans
e lerla ou traverse e ou kapav dir kontan twa/ enn ti dite?

02

FADING BY A J THOMAS – PAGE O35

TOU PE FONN

Mo mama so figir lapo sek ek
Labous ramase san ledan, san fosdan
Lebra kase dan plak ki frot
Ar so tete gos ki ti nouri mwa
Aster malad. So trwa mwa
Dan lopital ki ti donn li enpe lavi
Ki kapav tengn nenport kan;
Lamor ti pe fer letour, nou kone.

Li ti toultan ranpli ar lavi, ar lespwar
Me san atann li ti dir mwa:
‘Kifer viv? Mo ler finn vini.
Les mo ale, beta. Pa traka pou mwa.’
Aster so regar, so labous
Nepli ena okenn jos lavi.

Pandan so dernie sezour dan lopital,
Timama san konesans
Timama lekontrer
So lizie bat fol pa trouv
Zefor so garson ki pe rod kwar
Ankor ena lespwar –
Dan vid, tou dan vid.

03

THE WRITERS BY AMIT CHAUDHURI – PAGE 040
Writers? Or rioters?

KASER-PAKE OUSA PAKE-KASE

Depi 10 zour kaser-pake
Pe kas-pake. Dimoun trakase, dimoun plen.
Partou zot pe kas-pake; dan gran lavil,
Dan ti lavil; dan vie, dan nouvo.
Kaser-pake met lafaya,
Dife lor gablou.
Zot sort partou; dan tou kwen,
Dan tou jati; kafe san triyaz.
Ena vie, ena zenn; pli zenn
Ena zis 13 an.
Zot dibout red dan kwen lari;
Sakenn so lizie dan enn direksion.
Abandone, san gid, san travay,
Tou seki zot kone
Se kas-pake lanwit-lizour.

04

GHAZAL BY ANAND THAKORE – PAGE 057

GAZAL

Mo choupchap Senier ousa apel li?
Manz mo kou trankil ousa fann ar li?

Mo gourou li la. Mo ferm so labous,
Anpes li koze ousa respe li?

Marenwar may mwa malgre mo zefor.
Pe rod sorti vremem ousa manti;

Zoli parol sen pe fonn dan kosmar.
Lavwa vinn timid ousa retresi.

Bliye mwa Senier dan mo sante tris
Parski mo pa pagla ousa modi;

Pa bizen ferm laport ler ou ale;
Ena’nn lot zoli ousa zavari:

Vini mo koko, nou met lafaya,
Sof jal-dolok ousa lapo kabri.

05/01/20

THROWING OUT THE BABY WITH THE BATHWATER

Reacting to my paper “On Politics”, published on 3 December 2019, a reader by the name of Roshan Beeharry had this to say: “The more I read Mr. Virahsawmy’s articles the more I feel he is selective as well as confused in his observations.
He resigned from the Labour Party following his pieces on both the MSM and Labour Party rubbing shoulders with Modi, whom he criticized with such vehemence and the rebutal (in fact he meant rebuttal) by Yatin Varma. He had derided Modi for obtaining power with only some 39% of the electoral votes. Today he is extolling ” Great political thinkers and leaders like Machiavelli, Napoleon, Lenin, Mao Tse Toung or General de Gaulle” for their strategies and tactics in capturing power!!! Lenin and Mao Tse Toung were responsible for the death of millions of their fellow citizens for remaining in power. General de Gaulle was responsible for the misery in French colonies of Africa…”

It is clear that the ‘non-selective’ and ‘non-confused’ R.B has either not understood the main point of the paper which argues that the winner of the Nov 2019 general elections was a better strategist and tactician than his opponents, or wants to sling mud on those who do not agree with him/her.

Mixing issues, quoting out of context and throwing out the baby with the bathwater seem to be the favourite non-selective and non-confused approach of those enamoured supporters of Varma and Modi. Their Manichaen mindset prevents them from seeing the complexities and subtleties of reality made up of opposing forces. Nothing, no one, no situation is absolutely black or white. We live in a world of different shades of grey. R.B cannot understand why Machiavelli, Napoleon, Lenin, Mao Tse Tung or General de Gaulle are often cited as political geniuses and not Varma and Modi. He does not seem to know that Lenin and Chairman Mao are known as great socialist revolutionaries who freed their respective countries, but that does not mean that they did not make mistakes. Lenin died a few years after the successful October Revolution (1917) and Stalin succeeded him. The non-selective and non-confused R.B sees no difference between Lenin and Stalin. Moreover, he should read a non-selective and non-confused history of WW2 to take cognisance of the immense contribution of Stalin and the Russian people in the defeat of Nazi power. Moreover, he does not want to know that General de Gaulle contributed a lot to the successful fight against Adolf Hitler (greatly admired by RSS and R.B probably), Naziism, fascism and defeated the Vichy government of France under Marshal Pétain.

Saying that does not mean condoning the atrocities of Stalin (not Lenin), colonialism and neocolonialism. That is a different story. The Manichaen approach has blinded R.B. Will he ever learn?

…WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD

Another reader who claims to be a university graduate has this to say on my article on literacy published on Tuesday 10 December: “… Creole is NOT a language. It is a patois. English is a language. So is French. So is Hindi. So is Chinese……..better stop here, this list might never end. All languages have syntax, grammar, verbs, nouns and adjectives. Creole has no syntax or grammar, which makes it so easy. English, though, has over a million words/expressions that can only be learned over a lifetime. Creole, with its 2,500 word dictionary (featured in l’express a while ago) spoken on a small island of 720 square miles, a spit in a vast ocean, does not really present Mauritius as a major international league table occupant. It’s OK for some to say “eta, cause creole do” but it won’t get you very far off Mauritius’ coastline. Had I the means to do so, I’d insist that English was taught in Mauritius by the “immersion method” …”

Let us see how many inaccuracies can ONE short text of roughly 150 words contain:

1. A patois is a LANGUAGE spoken by a small group whose members have to resort to a different language if they want to be heard by a greater audience. This is the scientific meaning of the word. Mauritian is the L1 of 90% and the L2 of the remaining 10%. It cannot be a patois. Here is the proof: People who speak French at home and in intimate circles will automatically use Mauritian if they want to win a seat in the Legislative Assembly. Which language, according to the scientific definition, is a patois in the Mauritian political context? Please don’t give a dog a bad name and then hang it!

2. Creole is not a language; it is a category of language which is also known as ‘contact language’. There are many such languages in the world: Afrikaan, one of the national languages of South Africa; Sango, the national and official language of the Central African Republic, Bahasa Indonesia, the national and official language of Indonesia; English, yes English, the quasi-universal language is also a creole language.

3. The reader of my article argues that Mauritian “has no syntax or grammar”. What is grammar? It refers to all phonological, syntactic and semantic rules governing the use of a language. Absence of grammar makes oracy and literacy impossible. Syntax refers to the “the arrangement of words and phrases to create well-formed sentences in a language”. It is unfortunate that my reader excels in the use of ill-defined terms. Syntax is a branch of grammar and the description of word classes is a branch of syntax together with plural, tense and aspect markers etc. A university graduate should know that.

4. On lexis, my reader reveals great ignorance, to say the least. This university graduate says that Mauritian has only 2,500 words. It is shocking that someone, who claims to have studied languages, is not aware that the 3rd edition of Dictioner Morisien which was published a few months ago contains about 20,000 words. Am I right to say that the English language has a term for this type of attitude: half-baked intellectual?

5. The Total Immersion Method is efficient if learners of L2 are fully literate in their L1. It is used to teach L2 oracy (speech in a new foreign language) and not literacy. Full bilingual literacy normally uses a combination of methods ranging from grammar translation to different direct methods, including ‘Total Immersion’.

6. To ignore the use of Mauritian because it is of no use to international communication is by far the most stupid statement ever made. Iceland has a population of 350, 000 people who cherish their local language which is both national and official. It is a developed country where all citizens master at least ONE second language, the most popular being English. Iceland uses its national language to develop ‘CULTURE TOURISM’.

TO CONCLUDE
If my readers want to improve their knowledge and minds on this issue, I would like to invite them to read these two documents found on my website by clicking on the titles below:

TRAINING IN BILINGUAL LITERACY

UNIVERSAL BILINGUAL FUNCTIONAL LITERACY (UBFL) FOR THE MARITIME REPUBLIC OF MAURITIUS

22.12.19

ON POLITICS

I believe that politics combine certain scientific and artistic skills blended into a specific type of intelligence known as “P0LITICAL INTELLIGENCE”. It’s not given to everyone. The world has known many political fools (including myself) and very few political geniuses.

What is the main function of politics and how are its goals achieved?

Politics refer to a series of activities involving the maintenance, organisation and transformation of society and to achieve the goals that are decided upon, the protagonists must conquer state power.

To fully grasp the true nature of politics, let us ponder over this maxim: “War is simply the continuation of politics by other means (Carl von Clausewitz).”Is it surprising that many military terms or near-synonyms are used by politics? Strategy, tactics, attack, defence, bastion, soldier, lieutenant; politburo/war cabinet; leader/general; second in command/deputy leader etc.

DOING IT OTHERWISE

We often hear of people wanting to do politics otherwise (faire la politique autrement). They should explain what they mean. Most importantly, they should explain how they mean to conquer state power to have the means of doing what for them is right. Great political thinkers and leaders like Machiavelli, Napoleon, Lenin, Mao Tse Toung or General de Gaulle have been great and successful tacticians and strategists. Should we not learn from them? Political decision making is ruled by a militarylike logic, based on seizing the time at the right time; based on expediency and the ability or political intelligence to choose the path to success.

Great politicians have excelled at this and mediocre ones in their half-hearted and pusillanimous approach are ultimately driven into oblivion.

THE NOVEMBER 2019 ELECTIONS

The snap elections have taken many by surprise. Some argue that the Prime Minister should have waited for examinations to be over; others argue that the power to choose the election date should be removed from the PM and handed over to Electoral Commission; some more think that the Indian model (India is a federal state made up of more than 24 states), where the general Lok Sabha elections are run over a period of 5 weeks concurrently with different state assembly elections, should inspire us. They have suddenly forgotten that Mauritius has always followed the Westminister model which gives full power to the PM within the bounds of law and democratic principles.
A general does not choose the decisive moment in a haphazard way. The right moment for attack is chosen if it guarantees success. This is the logic which also drives a skilful Prime Minister. He who was pooh-poohed as Pinocchio and ‘Lenpos’ by his opponents has taught them a lesson which they cannot digest.

A good friend of mine (N.S.) who is a shrewd political observer rightly said that if the November elections were delayed by two weeks the results would have been totally different.

We may or may not like the MSM leader – I for one have no sympathy for him for we are poles apart – but we are forced to admit that he took the right decision which led his ‘army’ to victory leaving his opponents behind, licking their wounds.

The PTr and the MMM are now in shambles and total disarray and instead of introspection and self-criticism, they are looking for scapegoats. The next time will be worse.

30/11/19

WANTED! A NEW LEADERSHIP

Trwa baton mouroum,
Mem longer ek mem groser
Pe rod siz lor tronn.

Triple murungas
Made of the same slick sickness
Compete for the throne.

With global warming and climate crisis knocking at the door, we, in the Maritime Republic of Mauritius must get ready to face mankind’s greatest challenge since the beginning of human life on Earth. There must be rapid and radical transformation in all spheres of life.

We must rethink our economy and move away from selfishness and greed to solidarity and sharing. Our land, a sacred gift of God, cannot be used as a banal commodity to be sold to the highest bidder for money which in most cases is stacked in foreign banks, abroad. We must use our land judiciously to grow energy and food; to provide people with shelter and leisure; and to protect life and the environment. We must move away from beach tourism to culture and green tourism to strengthen the human bond.

Land and country planning must be rethought. Too much time and energy are wasted travelling to go to work or school. The island of Mauritius could be divided into about 20 autonomous municipalities each having its decentralised administrative, residential, agricultural, industrial and cultural cum leisure sectors with a central government acting more like a coordinator and not like BIG BULLY BROTHER. To achieve greater efficiency, production, distribution and consumption should develop along cooperative lines. These will lead to greater economic, social and cultural democracy.

For national and international communication efficiency, all Mauritians must become IT literate and that means that we must first achieve UNIVERSAL FUNCTIONAL LITERACY in the two Creole Languages of the republic, namely, Mauritian and English. On the ground, experiments have shown that BILINGUAL universal functional literacy can be easily achieved if the right language policy is adopted. But the traditional elite in power prefers to stick to a programme which for all intents and purposes has totally failed. Why? Is it because it’s a good way to remain in power? Traditional leaders have always been against enlightenment.

When will the people learn that: “Pa kapav manz banann dan dé bout/ you can’t have your cake and eat it/ vous ne pouvez pas avoir le beurre et l’argent du beurre.”

What do we need to succeed? First and foremost, a new kind of leadership. The traditional elite is responsible for the mess we are in.

The economic traditional leaders chose to build links with Apartheid South Africa instead of leading the people to national sovereignty; the political traditional leaders failed to unite the people on the long and hard road to independence and national identity and, consequently consolidated communalism; the religious traditional leaders overemphasized and are still overemphasizing rituals and ignorance of the true nature of faith has further divided the population. We are experts at building walls and total failures at building bridges.

Traditional leadership is based on the belief that the world is divided into a handful of leaders on the one hand and masses of followers on the other. The leaders think they have special rights; they are above the lot and are to be obeyed even when they have failed several times and have put the future in jeopardy.

Now we have to face two sets of complementary problems at the same time: ecological catastrophe and nation-building. Will a new imaginative and progressive leadership emerge to lead us into a better world, against life-threatening issues? Time will tell.

But already, we can imagine the essence of these new leaders. Antonio Gramsci’s reflections can help us. His concept of ‘organic intellectuals’ make sense. These are leaders who are part of the people they lead; they teach the people while they learn from them; they are in spiritual, intellectual and emotional communion with the people they lead. The Italian Marxist, Antonio Gramsci, was writing about revolutionary socialist leaders but his thinking is also relevant to the issues confronting us. In the different spheres of life (economic, political, social and cultural), we need these organic intellectuals to make a nation of the people of Mauritius; they will teach us what we really are and where we should go and at the same time learn from us, for they know that learning is a life process. Humility and resilience are their hallmarks as opposed to the arrogance and stupidity of the traditional elite.

24/11/19