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Translated by and Courtesy of Helen Sylliboy.
Piley lnu Saqmaw:
New Indian chief
Kaplie’l Silipay, We’koqma’q tley
Gabriel Sylliboy, Whycocomagh, he is from.
Potlotek, U’nama’kik: 8 te’sukna’q A’kist, 1918.
Chapel Island, Cape Breton, 8 as many days August, 1918.
No’kmatutk, aknutmuloq ta’n teli wli seta’newimkis tetta:
My friends, I will tell you how good St. Anne’s was here
panta’sikip mawio’mi wla tepknuset newktikunitek;
it was opened gathering this moon on the first;
tujiw pa’tlia’s mawio’miey pekisinkip,
then the priest for the gathering came,
aqq elp na pa kulpiw poqji pejita’pnik mimajuinu’k
and then it was…started to they arrive the people
ta’nik naji alasutma’tijika, teluemk, suel etuk kaqi pejita’tij ta’n te’si’tij
those who came to they pray, it can be said, almost nearly all came so many
mimajuinu’k U’namakik na asukom te’sikl wtana. Toqo tlisip
people from Cape Breton six number reserves. So it was
weja’tekemk Kjipuktukewa’j saqmaw nekm ansema kaqi pejita’tiji
as far as Halifax’s chief him exactly all they came
wji’nemum aqqq msit wnijanua. Toqo tujiw We’kapekitkewa’j lnui
his men and all their children. So at that time
saqmaw aqq wnijin aqq me’ji’nmuk; toqo Maliko’mijkewa’j saqmaw
Chief and his children and more men; so Merrigomish’s chief
nekm pekisink aqq me’ji’nmuk; tujiw apj po’kemkekewa’j lnui saqmaw
him he came and more men; so again…Indian chief
elp nekm pekisink aqq pukwelkik ji’nmuk pejita’tij aqq elp wnijanuaq.
also him he came and many men came and also their children
Tujiw kaqi mawi pejita’titek mimajuinu’k; na pa nankmayiw
at that time together they came the people; so then right away
ji’nmuk mawi piskweta’pnik ta’n etli aknutmamk ekjikuo’mka,
the men together went in where it was to talk the great house,
mawa’tu’tip newkte’jk mawi wlite’taqan, aqq elp kisitu’tip mawi
they gathered one the best good idea, and also made the best
klusuaqan wsaqmawin Paksima Teni, Lnui saqamawaq wkwisl nutkwe’ka.
word to be chief Simon Denny, Indian chief (deceased) his son was young.
katu na ji’nm nutkwe’k moqwej kisi wksua’tuk nekm saqmawina,
but that man young could not take on him to be chief,
tela’lij wutja elmi kaqielitek teplekwi’tisna mu saqmawuti nekmowk
it was because his father on the way to being gone had decreed that the chieftainship they
wsua’tunewa. Katu me’kweji kikajiatipn kisiku’ka amuj
would not take. But more they tried the elders he has to
wsaqmawilina. Katu pa’tlia’s pipanimutek ta’n teli mtue’k wen
to become chief. But the priest when he was asked on how difficult for one
sekwiska’toq kespaqnutmamkewey wjit wunki’kwil teluet mawi mtue’k
to be broken his last word for his parent’s word most difficult
kisi suiska’tasin ta’n wen teli kespi tpelutekeja. Na nuku kisiku’k
for it to be broken that one how last he has decreed. So then the elders
kaqma’tu’tij elekemkeweya, aqq e’tasiw newkte’jit ji’nm weja’lut
put up the throwing game, and each man was chosen from
te’s lnui wtana U’namakika, Potlotek Ekian Paul weji emknut,
each Indian reserve in Cape Breton, Chapel Island Steven Paul came to be chosen
Malikewetik S’ak Nuel Jo, We’koqma’q Kaplie’l Silipay, Waqmitkuk
Isaac Noel Joe, Whycocomagh Gabriel Sylliboy, Nyanza
Isato’l Pielaw, Kjikank Jo’ Ma’sl, Eskisoqnik Plansue Ku’l.
Isadore Pierro, Sydney Joseph Marshall, Eskasoni Frank Gould.
Na’elekemkewey pemiaqip tapukunitek ni’soqo nesukunitek 11 ajietek
So the throwing game went from the second day till the fourth day 11 o’clock
wela’kw; tujiw ankaptemkl kiljaqana; We’koqma’qewa’j keptin
at night, then when it was looked at the counting; Whycocomagh’s Captain
Kaplie’l nekm kespu’tuet, asukuom te’siskeksijik jel ukmuljin elia’ta’tji;
Gabriel him he won, 60 were in number and 7 were made;
na nekm nikej lnui saqmaw mi’kma’kika, kwlaman ninen
so him now Indian chief of Mi’kmaq land, so us
U’nama’kik tleyawiek kekunmek mawi wlita’simka nemi’kej na ji’nm
Cape Breton belong we had the best good thoughts when we saw this man
saqmawija, mita na kisiku mawi ulkmiksit aqq nilaje’k aqq mawikenat
become chief, because this elder the best character and prepared and strongest
wjit na lukuaqana.
for this work.
Toqo tujiw kutjinu pa’tlia’s pekisink nesukunitek elmi wla’kwek,
So then our father the priest came on the fourth the following evening,
aqq eksitpu’k newkunij meski’k alame’s elitoq, toqo piley lnui
and on the morning of the fifth big mass he make, and so the new chief
saqmaw metal naso’tluj metgelpukua’sit kikjiw patkwi elasutmaqaniktuk;
the chief’s medal was put on him, he knelt down near the altar;
aqq kutjinu lnui pa’tlia’s kekina’muajl aqq welimajl,
and our father the Indian priest taught him and said good things about him,
Matio Plansue aqq ktik saqmaw etui kaqamijik kekuna’tijl
Matthew Francis and other chiefs on either side they stood they had
kiwkto’qu a’papi’l aqq Matio elp kelulasnl saqmal, toqo nuji nto’q
the circle rope, and Matthew also spoke to the chief, so those who usually sing
ketapekiejik alasutmaqan, Kjisaqmaw wsitawi’tui’n ntelekeminen.
they sang a prayer, God save our King.
Tujiw kaqia’q alame’s ta’n te’sit wen teko’tk na msit
Then when it was over the mass all those who stayed so everybody
weskaqeltemi’tij saqmawi pesemkeweya, aqq muska’tua’tij ta’n
they kissed the chief’s crucifix, and they showed how
telki’k ksaltimkewey iknmua’tij lnui saqmala. Toqo tujiw na
big their love they give to the new Indian chief. So then that
na’kwek pa’tlia’s etli nsituapukuet aklasie’wi’sit Rev. D. Gillis,
day the priest who gives wise talk spoke English, Rev. D. Gillis,
wejietaq kjipa’tlia’sewa’kik nalikitkuniejka, mawi ntawi
he came from Bishop’s in Antigonish, the best know how
nsituappukuet,na (kikna’mukuma) mawi wlimatka mi’kmaqa lnu’ka, aqq
to give wise talk, so (he taught them) the best he said of them Mi’kmaq Indians and
weskutkek ta’n teli sa’q weji pkutamkiaq saqmawuti U’nama’kika.
he talked about on how long it began from chieftainship in Cape Breton.
Toqo tapu ajietek na na’kwek tujiw tewa’ltimkip tewa’lut kukmijinu
So two o’clock that day when it was brought out she was taken our grandmother
Se’tana, na nuji ntu’ti’tijik weji pkuji ntu’tipenik lamikuomk
Saint Anne, those who usually sing from there started to sing from the inside
alasutmuokuoma mi’soqo na kunty mikwite’tmaqaney eteka,
of the prayerhouse until that stone to remember by is
tapusitki’k ki’s sa’q aniapsuinukuik pa’tlia’skik pekisinkisenika,
two of them already longtime penitent preists came,
toqo elukomi’tis puksukl mawo’tun na na’te’l toqo nukwa’tuna, na pa
then ordered that logs be gathered there so they can be burned, so then
teliaqsep, aqq kis nukwaqek puksukl poqji alasutmamkis misoqo
it happened, and when they burned the logs they started to pray until
kaqoqtek elp kaqiaqsip ta’n teli alasutmamk na na’te’la. 1857 Anno
it burned out and it was over how to pray there. 1857 in the year
Domini eluiknek te’sipunkekek wtejk kisi saqmawitek Plansue Tuma
of Our Lord, 7 years behind when he became chief Frank Thomas
teluisisenaq lnui saqmawaq U’nama’kik na tujiw mikuaptiksip na t’an
was his name Indian chief of Cape Breton. It was then he noticed that
puktew ika’tu’tis nekla aniapsuinukuik kujinaqi’k tujiw nekla
fire they put those penitent our fathers ever since this
saqmawaq mikwite’kis aji espa’tun na na’te’la tujiw elukomis
chief could remember to make it more esteemed it was then he ordered
kwilasin kuntey ta’n sapukuan ekwitka aqq pekisutasikek elukomis
to search for the rock that in water it was submersed and when it was brought he asked
klujiewey wskijipukwa’tasina aqq mawi piska’tasina aqq na’te’l tujiw
a cross be placed on top and together…and there then
la’tasin kukmijimu Se’ta’n te’s tewa’lujela. Nike’j tujiw na’te’l
she will be brought our grandmother Saint Anne everytime she is taken out. Now then there
pejit’amkek kujinu lnui pa’tlia’s eli nsetuapukuep aqq welutkip
when they came our father Indian priest went he preached and said good things about
ta’n koqoey tele’k te’s kukmijinu Se’ta’n tewa’luja, aqq eltamkip
that thing happens each time our grandmother St. Anne is taken out, and they went
Se’ta’n wplaqanek, wkwat weskaqeltemup, pkitnemasuti nespia’ti’tip
to St. Anne’s lap, her foot was kissed, a share given out while it was going on
mimajuinu’k. Kaqi kiskajo’ltimkek, tujiw apj eli apajita’mkip
the people. Finished getting ready, then again went back again
alasutmuo’kuoma; nuji ntu’tijik alasutmaqan jipkelmulek apaji
to prayerhouse, those who usually sing prayer great worship back
nut’tip mi’soqo lamikuo’mk. Kaqi apaji piskweta’mkek tujiw
they sang until inside. Finished return going in until
elat’mkip patkwi alasutmaqaniktuk weska’qeltmeksip sape’wik
they went to the altar it was kissed the holy
waqantem kekmijinu A’na. Na teli kaqiaqsip tewa’ltimkeweya.
bone of grandmother St. Anne. That is how it was over going out.
Mawi pikwelkaq mimajuinuaq peji teko’tkaq, newitki’k pa’tlia’ski’ka
Most many people came to stay with, four priests
skemtuk etuk mimajuinukuik na’tami teluemk etuk suel ta’pu pitui
so it was maybe people somewhere it can be said almost near two thousand
mtlnaqannitki’k maw wapo’ltitka. Aqq mawi wantaqtekek mawio’mia,
including the white ones. And most quiet gathering
moquej etuk wenaq ketkiekaq ktuteminua, aqq mawi pkwelki’k
not even maybe someone was drunk of our friends, and most many
ko’qmanaki’k peji seta’newultitki’k, 477 te’sitki’k
of our relatives came to St. Anne’s, 477 in number
kemnie’wultitki’k, maw mijua’ji’jk piltui ila’lujika nekmow 40 te’sijika.
received Communion, including children getting First Communion them 40 in number.
Na’nukunitek tepknuset, amskwes elukutimkek, teliaqip kisalme’sikek
On the 5th day of the month, on Monday, it happened there after Mass
tujiw mimajuinu’k wenaqa’tu’tip salitey lnui Sa’n Tenio’q
then people put up an auction for Indian John Denny
wtapoqnemasutim telawtikek ika’qek $11. Skemtuk e’pitaq eli
his help was amounted came to $11.00 And for that woman
npekenaq Potlotek Sa’npatist Pla’spe’l wikmaja nekm wtapoqonmasutim
who died in Chapel Island John Battiste Prosper’s partner her help was
telawtik ika’q $7.50. Skemtuk mijua’ji’jaq etli npkaq na’te’la
amount came to $7.50 and for that child who died there
kisiku Lu’t Pa’l wnijana jipuktuk tleya telawtik nekm wsaliteyim
elder Ruth Paul’s child in Halifax belonged amount of his auction
$10.00 Aqq kisiku nekemewey ika’tu’tip kiknaqSe’ta’n Potloteka na sumalkia.
$10.00 and the Elder him he put in our chouse St. Anne in chapel Island that
Asukuom te’sukunitek tujiw apj kisiku’k mawi piskueta’pni’k
On the seventh day then again the elders together went in
Kjikuomk ta’n etlaknutmamka eltu’tip mawi kelusuaqan wjit ta’n teli
The Great House where there are discussions they made together word on how
Kisi pukua’laten keptina, ta’ni piley lnu saqamaw apoqonmajia, aqq
They can be stood the captains, those the new Indian chief will be helped by, and
kisa’tasik mawi wlite’taqan wjit mawi klusuaqaniktuk Antle Elek
It was made the best thought for all in words Andrew Alex
Putu’s apaji msenk Potolek tley; skemtuk Paksima Pask kjikeptin
Speaker return he caught it from Chapel Island he belongs, Simon Basque Grand Captain
We’koqma’q tley, So’sep Ekian keptin Potolek tley, Sa’n Nuel Teni
From Whycocomagh, Joseph Stevens captain Chapel Island he belongs, John Noel Denny
Keptin Malikewe’jk, Plansue Pielaw keptin Waqmatkuk, Plansue Ku’l
Captain Maligowatch, Frank Pierro Nyanza, Frank Gould
Keptin Eskisoqnik; skemtuk kjikan kunteyiktuk alsusuti nekte
Captian Eskasoni; simply from the town of the rock of authority
Telipukuik. Kaqikisipukueta’titek keptina tujiw lnui saqamaw Matio
It remains the same. When they finished standing the captains then Indian Chief Matthew
Plansue Malikuomijkewa’j etlewistoqop Kjikuomk weskutkip ankaptmn
Francis of Merrigomish talked in the Big House he talked about seeing
Mi’kmawaji ta’n te’sit weji wkutkepisit na mawi pukteminu kte’k
All the Mi’kmaq however many…..so all our fire when cold
Potlotek Una’maki mawa’tasin suliewey wjit ta’n teli kisi
Chapel Island Cape Breton be collected the money on how it can be
Pkwateltisnu wklujiem mikuite’temaqaney Ksaqamaminuaq, Sa’n Teni
We can buy his cross to be remembered by Our Grand Chief John Denny
Etli npekaq Eskisoqonik U’nama’kika, aqq jel nekm nankemiw
Who died in Eskasoni, Cape Breton, and even he right away
Meskana’toqsipnek wsuliem, aqq me’eykik ji’nmukik ta’nkik
Had laid out flat his own money and more there was men who
Tela’taqititkik; kwlaman etawemk msit wenik wli majulkwatminew
Had done so too; so to beg all those good they will follow
Ta’n na ksaqamaminuaq teli tpelut, na newkte li’te’taqana.
How this our chief already had decreed, so the same we all will think.
Skemtuk eluiknek te’sukunitek, elta’mkip meski’k klujiewey kaqmik
Simply on the seventh day, we went big cross standing
Ke’kwe’k kmtniktuk ta’n teli wisunkasik Kalpe’l; kujinu lnui
On top of mountain that which is named Calvary, our father Indian
Pa’tlia’s eli wije’wep. Poqtamkita’mkek lamikuomk alasutmuo’kuomk
Priest he also went with them. When they started out inside the prayerhouse
Weji pkuji alasutmamkip aqq nuji alasumat nekm kujinal iknmatip
From there started to pray and usual he prays him our father had given him
Wnikani alasutman e’wmn elasutmaqan ta’n teley klujiewey awtiktuk
To be first to pray he can use the prayer that belongs to the cross road
Teleya; aqq teliaqip, te’sek klujiewe’jl te’s nenkita’mk mi’soqo
Belongs; and it happened, all of the crosses each time to stop at until
Ta’n tett meski’k klujiewey kaqmik ke’kwe’k kmtniktuka. Na’te’l
That where the big cross stands on top of the mountain. There
Pejita’mkek, tujiw kujinu lnui pa’tlia’s etli nsituapukuet kikjiw
When they came, then our father the Indian priest there he preached near
Klujieweyiktuka paqinestmn ta’n tele’ksip klujiewey awtia aqq
The cross he understood everything on what happened at the cross road and
Teplutkip ta’n koqoey ela’luek elue’wutiktuka na na’te’l teli
He decreed on what will take you into sin that there how
Puna’tuna, jel wekaw puktewijk elui’tmasultinew winuik aqq
You stop doing, even including fire water they will swear by and
Tela’taktitki’k wskwijinu’kuik elita’mkip klujiewey weskaqeltmkip
They did this the people when to go to the cross to be kissed
App epki’tnemasuti ela’tu’tip mimajuinu’ka. Aqq kaqi kiskajo’ltimkek
And the giving out they took to the people. And finished getting ready
Tujiw apj apaji ntu’tipenik mi’soqo lamikuom alasutmuo’kukma. Tujiw
Then again return they sang until inside the prayer house. Then
Kaqi apajita’mkek nankmiw wi’kipaltimkewey wenaqa’tu’ti’tip ji’nmuk
Finished returning immediately an honour feast they raised the men
Wi’kipalanew pile’l wsaqmamuala. Aqq kaqi kiskajiaq wi’kipaltimk
Were to honour their new chief. And finished getting ready the honouring
Nankemiw kisiku’k wenaqi neskaqtpenik nespama’tip ta’n telki’k
Immediately the elders got up to…they looked on how big
Wsutukuni wsekewita’suti teli msaqmasik mekwayik wtininewaqa.
….to smile about how it laid down in the midst of their bodies.
Na etliaqsip mawio’mi Potlotek U’nama’kik.
This happened at the gathering at Chapel Island.
Nike’j pasik aknimkik ta’n te’sijik kis malie’wultijika.
Now only I will tell about how many were able to get married.
Kaplie’l Klimu kisi malie’wit aqq e’pite’s Matle’n Jo skemtuk Pie’l Patist
Gabriel Cremo was able he marry and young girl Madeline Joe simply Peter Battiste
Aqq Plsit Mise’l, skemtuk Plansue Kapo aqq Anije’n Plaspe’l.
And Bridget Michael, simply Frank Cabot and Annie Jane Prosper.
Na’namset. Ni’n mawio’mi nuji wi’kiket.
That was it. Me gathering usually the one who writes.
Pikwelkl alame’sl wikmutemeksepenl. Ke’j eta Plansue Tumaoq
Many were the masses we asked for. Even the late Frank Thomas
Tapuakikewey winijin iknmaji, Mise’l Plansueo’q $6.50 elp winijn
The second of his children gave to him. Late Michael Francis $6.50 his children
Iknmaji, Ja’li, Po’leto’q $3. Antle Elikal iknmajl nujo’limitek
Gave to him, late Charles Poulette $3.00. For Andrew Alex it was given to him to handle
Wmakimek Potlotek, Mise’l Jo $2. iknmajl wte’piteml, Pelin Pa’loq ap
His ground Chapel Island. Michael Joe $2.00 was given to him by his wife, late Bella Paul
$2. iknmajl wtusl Mali A’nal Nuel Pa’loq app $2. wtusl iknmajl elp
$2.00 was given by her daughter Mary Ann. Late Noel Paul his daughter gave to him also
Eta Sa’n Pla’spe’l wte’pitema mesnik $4. wjit apje’jkl alame’sl aqq
John Prosper’s late wife she got $4.00 for a small mass and
Silipay Jo wikutk newte meski’k nekm wtapoqonmasutim. App ktekl
Levi Joe asked for one mass him to be of help to him. And other
Apje’jkl alame’sl kaqaiskl aqq alasutmaqaniktuk ika’lut Sala
Small masses many times and into prayer he be put late Charles
Na’kuto’q ta’naq nepknaq Maine 29 tes set tepk aqq wutkutalutaq
Knockwood who had died in Maine 29 of the month and was buried on
Si’steweyek 31 te’s.
Wednesday the 31st date.
Weja’tekemk Potlotek Lnui patlia’s wije’wasnl pa’tlia’sl Welliomal
From as far as Chapel Island the Indian priest went with the priest….
Wla paluesemiktuk toqo asoqma’sis We’koqma’q, ta’n telilapatoqsip
This…then crossed over to Whycocomagh, how he blest
Meski’k napui’kiken wli nkuti nesusutiey aqq kijjinu Mali ta’n nekm
Big picture of the Holy Trinity and our mother Mary that he
Iknmuetoqsip wla alasutmuo’kuom istaqe mikwite’tmaqan ta’n tlisip
Had given to this prayerhouse as if for remembrance that which Kaplie’l Silipay saqmawa’lus.
Alames elitasiksip wjit Pie’l Kuku
Gabriel Sylliboy was made chief. Mass was made for Peter Googoo’s
Wkwisl iknmasnl Plansueal aqq Ja’li Poleto’q Pasamayal iknmasnl:
Son was given to him by Frank and late Charlie Poulette Benajamin gave for him.
111 had gone to Confession.
Piktuk elp mawi alasutmamkis weja’tekemk kweltamultimkl 16 te’s.
In Pictou also all there was prayer from as far as Friday the 16th date.
Mi’soqo 19 te’s. 132 pa’qapukua’tisni’k. Kolipie Pa’loq nepkaq 16
Until the 19 date. 132 went to Confession. Late Albert Paul died on 16
Te’s aq wutkutalutaq ketui ekntie’wimkek 17 te’s; salitey
Date and was buried going to be Sunday 17 date, the auction
Elukwatasiksip aq lnui pa’tlia’s iknmus $5, aqq ktik alame’s
Was made and the Indian priest was given $5.00 and the other mass
Elitoqsip amskwes elukutimkek. Ekintie’wimk mawi msiki’ksip
He made first work day. Sunday the most biggest
Alasutmaqan, pikwelkik aklasie’wk teko’tmi’tis, maw ta’n nujo’tk
Prayer, many white men stayed with it, even those serving
Kasawo’qey lukuaqan, jel aklasie’w ministl; 6 te’s. patlia’sk
Steel work, even white man minister; 6 date the priests
Teko’tmi’tis aqq ne’sijik maw kaqmisnik patkwi alasutmaqaniktuk
They stayed with and three of them also stood by the altar prayer
Wjit kmnie’wuksimk; R.K. McIntyre eta aqq H.J. Mac Donald
For giving communion; R. K. McIntyre and H.J. Mac Donald
Nalikitkuniejk tle’k, toqo J.D. De Coste piktukewa’j, J.D. Mac Leod
Antigonish they belong, even so J.D. De Coste from Pictou, J.D. Mac Leod
Ta’n teli pa’tlia’swit aqq W. Mac Isaac nuji apoqonmuajl. Suliewey
On how he was the priest, and W. Mac Isaac usually helped him. The money
Mawa’tasiksepenl wjit piley alasutmuo’kuoma. Elp teko’tkip Kaplie’l
Was gathered for the new prayerhouse. Also attending Gabriel
Piley saqmaw aqq lo’q teli wulkwija’lasni l’nu nemi’ji, nkutey
The new chief and as to how much he made happy the Indians who saw him, likewise
Aklasie’w aqq pjiliw waqla pa’lia’sa.
The white men and even that priest.
Sekepene’katik: A’kist 5, 1918 –
Shubenacadie, August 5, 1918 –
Lo’q welaptmekl mtawekenji’jl wejiaql lnui pa’tlia’sewiktuk, msit
Overall we liked the look of little flags which came from the Indian priest’s place, all
Wen walaptikl, kiaskiw ika’ql ta’n tujiw menuekemkl. Meski’kek
Everybody liked the looks, slowly they came in when they were wanted. It was big
Alasutmamkek ekntie’wimkek alasme’sek eskitpukewaka, etuk 75
The praying on Sunday mass in the morning, maybe 75
Te’sijik ta’nik kisi kmnie’wultijika aqq kisi miawla’kwek tujiw
In number who received Communion and after the midday meal then
Pesmkewewey tewa’lut Se’t Ana aqq pikwelkik mimajuinu’ka aqq ne’kaw
The statue was taken of St. Anne and many people and all along
Nujinen pa’tlia’s tekweyinamek. Aqq meski’k suliewey mawa’tasiksip
Our father priest stayed with us. And big money was gathered.
Wjit alasutmuo’kuom, kisi mawkitemeksip telawtik $599.37. Ni’n N.M.
For the prayerhouse, it was gathered it cost $599.37. Me…
Amlamkuk, kwesawe’k – luiewimkewy tepkenuset 23-26 tlisip mawi
…, on the point…on the moon 23-26 all
Alasutmamkek, kukmijinu tews’lus ekntie’wimkek 25 te’sukna’q meski’k
Were in prayer 130 went to Confession. Big mass was made
Wjit Saqamaw Teni wkwisji’ja aqq wo’kmaa.
for Chief Denny’s sons and his relatives.