WARIGABAGA
Nelcia Robinson

The following poem entitled Warigabaga ?which means butterfly in Garifuna – is written by Nelcia Robinson.  Sister Nel received her inspiration from a butterfly that remained permanently throughout the three day duration of a workshop that she attended in the Hopkins village community center.  The Workshop was on the Garifuna dictionary that the National Garifuna Council of Belize is currently completing the included participants from St. Vincent, Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.  The butterfly has a lot of symbolism in Garifuna mythology.  And it was most mysterious that it never moved from the same spot and kept our company while we worked on the language.  As Sister Nelcia mentions in the poem, through the butterfly the ancestors made known to those at the workshop that they approved of our worthy efforts.

WARIGABAGA   
Nelcia Robinson – Hopkins ? 14/10/91

While Garinagu
reflected on
struggle in
Yurumein
and looming
loss of language

Warigabaga
Sped gracefully in ?

Warigabaga
Child of the Joy
Awakened from Sleep
Avoided the light and Settle
Delicately

Authoritatively
On the DRUM!
The Ancestors had come
to Counsel!

?Garinagu
break forth
from your cocoon
you holders of the
Knowledge
Let it fly free
as Warigabaga!

Nidehenu
Your language
is a symbol
of resistance
Freedom
Identity!

WRITE! that the
youth may read
SPEAK! that the
children may hear
Sing and Drum
That your fire
may blaze
Dance
Like Warigabaga!

For Warigabaga
is change
Re-creation
From tiny egg
under leaf
To fat Caterpillar
tight cocoon
Joyous Warigabaga
To Eggs!

Warigabaga is a coat
(of many colours)
Versatile
multiplied Hope
The Spirit of
Garifunaduau

Warigabaga is life
Awakened from sleep
Answering the heart beat
Drum beat!

Garinagu
Sing and Drum
That your fire
may blaze
Dance the Dance
of life
Sing and Drum
that your fire may blaze
Dance! like
Warigabaga!?