Sxwut’ts’uli – Hummingbird

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‘een’thu Sti’tum’at, Ruby Peter thu s-hwunitum’a’lh nu sne.
I’m Sti’tumat, Ruby Peter is my whiteman’s name.
nilh thu sxwut’ts’uli sxt’ekw’s thunu mun’u Sheila Johnny, Qwulsimtunaat.
This is the hummingbird, carved by my daughter, Sheila Johnny, Qwulsimtunaat.
She gave it to me.
‘iilh xu’athun kws suw’ mukw’s—
And there were four all together—
lhihw thu mumun’lh ‘i’ nuts’a’ tthu thi.
three small ones and one big one.
yath tsun ‘uw’ s’a’kw’usstuhw ni’ ‘u kwthu nu shni’ kwunus ‘a’mut.
I always have it hanging where I sit.

qux syaays tthu xut’ukw’ ‘u tthu hiiyaay’us ‘u tthu sxt’ekw’,
The people that work on carving have many things to do,
kwus saay’st-hwus tthu tun’ni’ ‘u tthu xpey’.
when they are preparing the red cedar.
ni’ sht’es kwus yuw’en’ kwsus saay’st-hwus tthu ni’ xuxul’utus.
She used to have to draft pattern.
niilh sxuxil’st-hwus lhunu mun’u ni’ ‘u tthu pipu,
My daughter used to make a pattern on the paper prepared,
‘i’ yelh sus nem’st-hwus ‘u tthu syalh xpey’.
before she puts it on the cedar wood.

ni’ wulh sxuxil’st-hwus ni’ ‘u kwthu pipu,
She has it all prepared on the paper.
‘i’ nuw’ t-hw xul’utus ‘ul’ nem’ ‘u tthu xpey’.
And then she just traced it onto the cedar.
wulh ts’umiil’, skw’ey kws plhet-s.
And the cedar is thin; it cannot be thick.
nuw’ tselushel’s ‘ul’ ‘u kwsis wulh xt’ekw’,
The carving is done by hand,
kwus thuytus tthu ni’ sxuxil’st-hwus.
and they would follow the tracing on the wood.

sus ne-e-em ‘uw’ lhits’utus nem’ yutetul’shus tthu ni’ sxuxil’st-hwus,
The outline would be cut first, following the tracing,
sht’es tthu shtl’up’i’snuts, tthu slhuq’we’lhs thu sxwut’ts’uli—
how the tail and back of the hummingbird are—
tthu shtl’up’i’snutss, ‘i’ tthu t’eluw’s,
the tail and the wings,
‘i’ tthu muqsuns kwsus tl’e’luqt tthu muqsun’s.
and the nose, which is a very long nose.

‘i’ nilh kwsis … tthu sht’es kwsis hay ‘ul’ ‘uy’uy’mut ‘u kwsus lhalhukw’, tthu stsukwul’a’lus.
And the image is made to reflect the beautiful colours when it’s flying.
‘e’ut kwu’elh [kwsus] tskwimst-hwus tthu sqway ‘i’ tthu p’uq’, tsq’ix,
So it is colored red… and green/blue and white and black,
‘i’ tthu shkwitth’utsalus nilh ni’ sht’a’al’ustuhws.
and the navy blue, those colors are the way it is.

‘i’ tthu sxt’ekw’s ‘u tthu t’eluw’s,
And the carving on the wing
tthu ni’ sht’es ‘u kwsus yuthey’tus ….
have to be made just so
i’ skw’ey kws nans ‘uw’ yutl’up kwus yuxut’ukw’tus.
and they can’t be too deep when you carve them
na’ut ‘uw’ tsxul’ ni’ ‘u tthu slhuq’we’lhs.
There are carved markings on the back of the hummingbird.
‘uy’uy’mut ‘u kwsus s’a’kw’us.
It looks beautiful when it is hanging up on the wall.

qux kws nuts’tuls tthu xut’ukw’ ‘u tthu sxwut’ts’uli.
There are many different ways that the hummingbird is carved (by various artists).
ni’ tsun ‘uw’ le’lum’nuhw kwunus ni’ [ne’nuts’uw’t-hwum].
I see the hummingbird designs in many places.
‘i’ qux kws hays ‘ul’ ‘uw’ naalts’tul.
and they are different designs.
kws sht’es kws ‘uy’uy’mut-s.
and how beautiful they make them.

nilh tsala’lh lhunu mun’u kwus wulh hwuniin’sum ‘u kwthu hwunitum’.
My daughter borrowed one hummingbird when a white man came to her place.
susuw’ thut, “nu stl’i kw’unus tsala’lh ‘ukw’ nuts’a’ nem’,
And she said, “I want to borrow one hummingbird because a man is looking for one,
nuts’a’ ‘ [ts’u] xwta’stum ‘utl’ chermani.”
and it’s going to be sent to Germany.
nus nuw’ ‘amust.
So I gave her one.

sus tl’uw’ qul’et xte’um ‘u kwthu nuts’a’ ‘i’ hay ni’ xwte’ ‘utl’ inklent.
She made another one and that one went to England.
‘iilh kwu’elh tl’e’ wulh qul’et hii’aam kwthu yey’sul’u,
She had orders from two people,
‘i’ hwi’ skw’ey [kws tl’e’s xt’ekw’] ni’ hwi’ me’kwulh ‘u kwthu tselushs,
but now she can’t carve anymore because she injured her hand,
skw’ey kws tl’e’s xt’ekw’.
she can’t carve anymore.

yath ‘uw’ ‘i’luqutus tthu hwulunitum’.
Hummingbirds are a favorite for the white people.
nilh ‘i’ yath ‘uw’ sxuluxil’ ‘i ‘u kw’i tawn.
That’s why there are hummingbird drawings all over town.
‘i’ ‘uli’uy’mut.
And they are beautiful.

‘i’ nilh ‘uw’ sxwi’em’s tthu s’ul-hween kws ‘ulh…
The Elders had stories about them…
kws wulhs m’iis wulh tetsul thu ‘u kwsus wulh m’i yukw’akw’usthut
that they would arrive when the weather started to warm up.
‘i’ wulh sqw’aqw’ulh ‘u thu spuhels.
And they always waited for the wind.
‘i’ nilh …wulh nilh thu qw’uqw’sutsun’ m’i yusq’uq’a’ ‘u lhey’ spuhels.
The swallows would come together (with the hummingbirds) with that wind.

suw’ xut’us tthu s’ul’eluhwulh, “…tetsul lhu… ni’ wa’lu tuw’ thume
The Elders would say, “Perhaps those two are arriving,
qw’uq’wsutsun’ ‘i’ thu sxut’ts’uli.”
the swallow and the hummingbird.”
nuw’ yusxuxitsstum’ kws wulh mi’s tetsul.
It was obvious to them when they would arrive.
m’i yukwun’els ‘u they’ spuhels, m’i [yu]sq’uq’a’.
They are carried by that wind, coming in with it.
qux kwu’elh sqwul’qwul’ ‘u thu sxwut’ts’uli.
So there are many stories about the hummingbird.
hay ch q’a’.
Thank you.