Stories From Kiribati
|Posted by Amota Eromanga on August 4, 2012 at 6:30 AM|
Below is the lyric of a sad song composed and sung by Nei Kauee (Kiribati well known female singer) and her group FOB - a local string choir which was so popular in 1980s. The four verses of the song together provide a summarised account of what really happened to Te Roota and passengers who were onboard her at that miserable trip. Te Roota was a passenger boat running mainly between Tarawa and Abaiang islands. It was owned and run by the people of Nuotaea village on Abaiang island. This trip was indeed the last this vessel ever made between Abaiang and Tarawa.
Although this true fortuity occurred more than twenty years ago, this song can still be heard nowadays among music broadcasted over Radio Kiribati. Once the song goes into our ears, memories go back to the victims of this horrible event which took the lives of many Ikiribati – men, women and children.
The song is in honour and memory of those who died as well as those managed to survive this grievous ocean accident. It has become an historical event which, like other events, will survive through generations to come. There aren’t any exceptions why we should not regard them as ‘heroes’ of the ocean!
Read the lyric of the song to discover more of what happened:
Verse 1: The year 1981, 26th day of the month March
it was Thursday the day we left
from our islet Nuotaea
we were going to Tarawa at Betio
but we didn’t get there 'cos Te Roota would not move.
Chorus: You all our families and relatives
we were now in danger
Died and left behind in the ocean
Mr Taburuea and Teiaokita
So sad Mr. Teaoti and Botaam
Mrs Tekiakia Mrs Ribanikai Kiataake
Rest in Peace and goodbye.
Verse 2: Sixty four (64) the number of days
we drifted through vast ocean
28th May we were found
by the American fishing vessel
we were then taken to Truk.
Verse 3: We finally got back onto our
island that we love so much
We Mr Etau Kirataura
Takineti Ioane Antonio
Benian Kamaua Mrs Temanibwebwe
Mrs Kautu Kakianako Mrs Boratu Mrs Ioanna
Health upon us all.
Here's the download link of Te Roota song (sung by modern singers).
Categories: Sad Stories