Stuart Robinson -- "Matevu", A Rotokas Folk Tale from Teop

"Matevu", A Rotokas Folk Tale from Teop

During my first trip to Bougainville, I recorded this folk tale (.wav | Shoebox) about a sacred taro and the origins of the redness of the Talisa tree's leaves. It turns out that it was previously documented by Irwin Firchow in his 1973 publication Rotokas Reo Vo Kokovaero (Shoebox). The folk tale includes a song (sheet music). The lyrics are not Rotokas. According to Firchow, they come from Teop, a neighboring Austronesian language. The Teop provenience of the songs is contested by Ulrike Mosel, who notes that the lyrics are not recognizably Teop even though a similar-sounding song is sung by the Teop.

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