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Arts & Culture Trust of the President

THE STORY OF DEMANA AND DEMAZANA

By Mantombi Sisilana

This is the story of two children, Demana (the boy) and Demazana (the girl), whose parents both died, leaving them to fend for themselves. They lived in a cave in a rock, and its door could be opened only from the inside. The boy would go out and hunt food and animals. On returning he would sing at the entrance to the cave. Then, recognising his voice, his sister would open the door. His song was:

Demazana, Demazana, daughter of my father,
Open the door so I may come in.
This one is not like a cave with two entrances,
Where swallows dwell.

On hearing that song Demazana would open the door and they would sit down and eat.

One day an ogre came to the cave and sang Demana's song. Demazana noted that the person who was singing had a big, rough voice that was not like that of her brother. She shouted back saying that the singer must leave because he was not her brother. The ogre left in tears because he could not get near his food.

When her brother returned and sang she let him in and told him about the ogre. The ogre was advised by an old woman to put an axe in the fire and burn it until it was red-hot. He should then swallow it. When it came out he should burn it again and swallow it once more. He did this three times and his voice became soft and sweet like Demana's. He then went to the cave and sang, and Demazana opened at once. The ogre took her. So Demana was left living alone in the cave.

One day, as he was hunting, Demana saw his sister collecting firewood. He set dogs on the ogre, killed it and took his sister back.



UDEMAZANA


Kwathi ke kaloku ngantsomi. Kwakukho umama enabantwana bebabini. Kwaqala kwatshona utata wabo aba bantwana, kwazolandela umama. Aba bantwna bakhulela esidulini. Xa befika esidulini bakhula, bakhula aba bantwana. Oyinkwenkwe kwakunguDemana, intombazana kunguDemazana. Bakhula, bakhula, bakhula, bakhula bade baba badadlana. Wasuka lo oyinkwenkwe wathi, Dade wethu, siya kuphila yintoni?” Wathi omnye, “Andazi, bhuti.” Wathi ke ngoku yena, “Hayi, kufuneka ndiye kuzingela iinyamazana.” Bafumana iliwa elinembobo. Bahlala kweli liwa. Hayi ke bethu bahlala ke aba bantwana. Wahamba umfowabo waya kuzingela iinyamazana. Wabuya nazo, wathi, “Dade wethu, xa ndifika apha emnyango, ndinkqonkqoza, ndiza kuhlabela. Xa usiva ukuba asindim ohlabelayo, ungavuli. Xa uva ukuba ndim uvule. Ndiza kuthi:

Demazana, Demazana kabawo,
Ndivulele ndingene.
Akunjengality' elintunja-mbini,
Lona lingenwa ziinkonjane.”

Kusakuba njalo ke avule uDemazana. Bahlale, batye, batye, batye, bagqibe. Kuthi apho bagqibe khona, balale. Kusasa avuke umfowabo, aphinde kwakhona ayozingela. Kwafika izim, lizokweba uDemazana. Lafika lathi,

Demazana, Demazana kabawo,
Ndivulele ndingene.
Akunjengality' elintunja-mbini,
Lona lingenwa ziinkonjane.

Wavakala uDemazana, wathi, “Futhsekh! Futhsekh! Awusobhuti wena! Hamba! Awusobhut' akakh' ubhut' onje ngawe, onelizw' elikhulu!” Lahamba izim. Lahamba lilila njalo. Wafika uDemana, wathi,

Demazana, Demazana kabawo,
Ndivulele ndingene.
Akunjengality' elintunja-mbini,
Lona lingenwa ziinkonjane.

Wavula. Uthe apho evula khona wathi, “Bhuti, bekufike izim lizondithatha. Ndalile ukulivulela. Wathi yena, “O, ungakhe ulivulele, mntakabawo, lakukuthatha.”

Izim lahamba laya kudlula komnye umakhulu. Lathi, “Makhulu, xa ubonisele inyamazana yakho endaweni ilizwi ukuze libe lincinci kufuneka uthini?” Wathi lo makhulu, “Kufuneka utshise izembe, libe bomvu, uliginye, liphume ngezantsi. Uphinde futhi ulitshise, uliginye, liphume ngezantsi. Uliginye kathathu. Ilizwi lakho liya kuba lincinci.” Ngenene wenze njalo – izim. Labuya izim kusasa. Lafika lathi,

Demazana, Demazana kabawo,
Ndivulele ndingene.
Akunjengality' elintunja-mbini,
Lona lingenwa ziinkonjane.

Wavula uDemazana. Lafika izim lamthatha lahamba naye. Wafika ubhuti wakhe wathi:

Demazana, Demazana kabawo,
Ndivulele ndingene.
Akunjengality' elintunja-mbini,
Lona lingenwa ziinkonjane.

Wangakhe atsho ukuvula emnyango uDemazana – kuba kaloku akakho emqolombeni, uhambile. Ubhuti wakhe waqhaqha isicango. Wangena ngaphakathi. Wafik' umntakwabo engekho. Wahlala lusizana. Wahlala lusizana. Kuthe langazana lithile evela ekuzingeleni, enxaniwe elambile, wambona uDemazana etheza endaweni elihlathi. Wathi, “Ungathi ngumntakabawo lowa nje.” Wangqala ngqo kuye, ehamba nezinja. Ezi zinja kwakunguJack enye kunguZiphi, enye kunguSkiphi. Wathi, “Khemaan!” Wathi, “Thsaa!” Eyi! Zalithath' izinja izim! Eyi! Zalithath' izinja izim! Labalek' izim ngomlenze omnye, lihamba lixhumaxhuma, lixhumaxhuma. Wamthatha udadewabo. Phela phela ngantsomi.

phezulu


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