Etymological breakdown

kuama ke to a
always O way COP
There is always a way.

The few words in this simple and inspirational phrase come from no less than five languages. Here’s how they break down:

kuama is actually kua (all) and ama (time) put together, kua comes from Arabic كل and ama from Scottish Gaelic àm.

ke (object/topic marker) is used much like Chinese , but also it has a role similar to Spanish qué.

to (way; path; method; manner) is taken directly from the Chinese character . The pronunciation is that of the Japanese Kan’on for the ideograph.

a (be; exist; yes) is taken from Japanese 有る, but is also used similarly to the third-person singular present indicative of the French verb avoir.


Contentives, or concepts…

I was recently asked how Kala words can have “an array of meanings”. This is based on the idea that all nouns and verbs can be grouped together as contentives (content words) or concepts. So I decided to explain this as best I can. Keep in mind I’ve never had a single linguistics class, this is just my understanding based on very nonacademic research. These concepts often correlate to Chinese ideograms, or Semitic triconsonantal roots.

* anya – eye; to see; to look (at); to watch | This concept obviously has to do with sight, so if one says na anya it means I see because it is only the pronoun na and is followed by anya, rather than a construction like anya nayo which would be my eye because anya is followed by the modified/modifying pronoun nayo. The concept can be extended with other modifiers like -mpo, meaning “bad”, or “unfavorable”, so anyampo can mean “bad vision”, or something like “evil eye”. Much of how the phrase or construction is interpreted/translated has to do with context and prosody.

* suha – mouth; taste; tongue | This concept is related to the mouth in general, whereas kipa is related to the inner mouth, and tsila the outer mouth. So a phrase like suha tayo (your mouth) could be interpreted as “your tongue” or “your taste”. It should be noted that this “taste” is strictly related to flavor, and yeua has to do with trying or sampling something. So, with suha, a phrase like ke suha nayo umua “My mouth/tongue hurts” obviously does not mean “taste (flavor)”, but ta’etla suhapa ka “Can you taste it?” is a verbal use of suha rather than nominal.

* yala – to go; to walk; travel | This is a very commonly used idea in every language; “Where are you going?”, “I went home.” “I’m going to school.” As a verb, the use of yala is evident, but as a noun, it might appear in a construction like to ke yala tayo ka “How is your travel?” or more idiomatic, “How’s your trip going?”

I’ll post more about these in the coming weeks.

morning, noon, and night

warm and inviting
soothing to a weary soul
comforting at times of sorrow
and reassuring in times of joy
shared or taken in solitude
searing or just so
no one consoles as you
the truest friend to us all


Adpositions? Who needs ’em?

na ke makampo anuye
1sg O music-bad hear-PST

This can mean “I heard the bad music” or “I listened to the bad music.” The latter lacks the preposition “to.” This is because Kala sentences are contextual, and made so by the array of meanings conveyed by verbs. There are multiple examples of this in Kala, many of which are more prominent during conversation.

I will post more another time.

Un solve.

On ave un via a estra cada caxa, un solve a cada enigma; es simple un cosa de trova lo. – Capitan Jean-Luc Picard

Nos limitas

Nos debe consensi nos limitas. Natur e la desiras se pote pone nos en peril. A no tempo nos debe atenta esede nos limitas. Vive e sania es primia.

This I know…

Novelty and nostalgia are insidiously cyclical and grotesquely contagious. Striving for careful contemplation becomes increasingly difficult in the haze of a fickle crowd.