Thursday, March 30, 2017

Djelem Djelem, Song of a People without a Nation--Romani

Go to YouTube for the Barcelona Gipsy Klezmer Orchestra performance. Click on the above link.

After experiencing firsthand the incarceration of Roma during the Porajmos (the Romani Holocaust of World War II), [Žarko] Jovanović later composed the lyrics of "Gelem, Gelem" and set them to a traditional melody in 1949. The song was first adopted by delegates of the first World Romani Congress held in 1971.” Quoted from Wikipedia

The lyrics of Djelem Djelem:

Gelem, gelem, lungone dromensa
Maladilem bakhtale Romensa
A Romale, katar tumen aven,
E tsarensa bakhtale dromensa?
A Romale, A Chavale
Sas vi man yekh bari familiya,
Mundardyas la e Kali Legiya
Aven mansa sa lumnyake Roma,
Kai putardile e Romane droma
Ake vriama, usti Rom akana,
Amen khutasa misto kai kerasa
A Romale, A Chavale
Puter Devla le parne vudara
Te shai dikhav kai si me manusha
Pale ka zhav lungone dromendar
Thai ka phirav bakhtale Romensa
A Romalen, A chavalen
Opre Rroma, si bakht akana
Aven mansa sa lumnyake Roma
O kalo mui thai e kale yakha
Kamav len sar e kale drakha
A Romalen, A chavalen.
I went, I went on long roads
I met happy Roma
O Roma, where do you come from,
With tents happy on the road?
O Roma, O Romani youths!
I once had a great family,
The Black Legion murdered them
Come with me, Roma from all the world
For the Roma, roads have opened
Now is the time, rise up Roma now,
We will rise high if we act
O Roma, O Romani youths!
Open, God, White doors
So I can see where are my people.
Come back to tour the roads
And walk with happy Roma
O Roma, O Romani youths!
Up, Romani people! Now is the time
Come with me, Roma from all the world
Dark face and dark eyes,
I want them like dark grapes
O Roma, O Romani youths!
(from Wikipedia)

(Mary Lou Cheatham, along with Sarah Walker Gorrell, authored a novel depicting life of the Romanies in Mississippi in the early 1900's:  Travelers in Painted Wagons on Cohay Creek.)


No comments: