Tuesday, July 12, 2011

MAJCIN OPROSTAJ - Mother, forgive

Majcin Oprostaj is a sevdalinka or sevdah.  This is a major change of pace now from uspješnica.  Sevdalinka are characterized by rich harmony full of melancholic emotions. The tempo is a slow or moderate and varied by the singer throughout the song.  Sevdalinka songs are very elaborate, emotionally charged and are  traditionally sung with passion and fervor. The combination of Oriental, European and Sephardic elements make this genre stand out among other types of Balkan folk music.  For more about this genre please peruse the Glossary.

Meho Puzić was born at Odžak in 1937.  Odžak is a town of about ten thousand population in the Bosanska Posavina, more precisely in Posavska županija in Bosnia directly across the Sava from Croatia.  Odžak is a place where minaret and church are not far apart.  Until his death 25 June 2007 Puzić   was a well known sevdalinka performer. 
Odžak 1905

Odžak 2009

As could be expected, MAJCIN OPROSTAJ is a sad sad song. The song is about as sad as they come.  A mother has awaited her son with tears in her eyes day after day, year after year, perhaps decade after decade, but he never comes to her side. Now her eyes are closed forever.  Now, forever, there is no one to forgive him.   Now, forever, there is no end to his remorse. 

This is a teaching song within the culture. This is one of those "sonny boy, you had best go see your mother and take care of her or the guilt is  going to overwhelm you someday" songs. Are there more songs like this one?   Yes, there are.

Hitao je siank majci
jer mu bolna bi, jer mu bolna bi
da je vidi dok je ziva
da mu halali, da mu oprosti

Ref. 2x
Dvije suze iz dva oka
na mezar su kanule
iz tih suza dvije ruze
na mezaru procvale

Zatekao nije majku
dok mu ziva bi
nije sina docekala
da mu halali, da mu oprosti 
Ref. 2x

Zatvorila majka oci
sta je bilo bi
nije sina docekala
da mu halali, da mu oprosti
Ref. 2x

English Translation:  Help!   This song is in Bosnian, yes? I must confess that I am not sure exactly how these words go on English.  Maybe someone help me fill in the blanks on this one.  Nevertheless, I think the English reader will understand the point of the song.

[Hitao] is [siank] mother
because be painful to him, because be painful to him
to see her while alive
that he ask her to forgive him

Ref 2x
Two tears of two eyes
the tomb of the tear-ducts
from these tears two roses
blossom on a grave

He found no mother
While she was alive
no son came to greet her
so he could plead with her to forgive him
 Ref 2x

Mother closed eyes
What is will be
no son come to greet her
so he could plead with her to forgive him
Ref 2x


do sljedeći put, blagoslov - until next time, blessings,

Canovals a.k.a. Slavonac

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