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Prose Selection
from Spoken Marshallese

Bubu. - Divination. [SM25]

Bubu ej juon maroñ ri-wūno in etto ilo Ṃajeḷ raar kōjerbale ñe rej kōṇaan jeḷā kōn juon men eo rej jab meḷeḷe kake. Men in kar ṃōttan ekkōpāl im wūno. Bubu eḷap tokjān ṇan wūno, ñan kapok ri-kọọt, im ñan kapok men ko rej jako. Raar kōjerbal ñan wūno ñe rej pukot nañinmej rot eo an juon armej, wūno ta eo ekkar, ia eo wūno eo epād ie, kab wōn eo ekkar ñan leḷọk wūno eo. Iien eo iien wūno ej bar juon iaan men ko bubu ej kwaḷọk. Men ko rej kōjerbali ñan bubu remaroñ kimej, juubub, maañ, ekkwaḷ, dekā, im bōlōk.
Divination was something olden-time Marshallese doctors used to learn about something they didn’t understand. This was part of sorcery and of medicine. Divination was important for medicine, for discovering thieves, and for locating lost objects. It was used in medicine for diagnosing the sickness of a person, what medicine to use, where to find the medicine, and whose responsibility it was to apply the medicine. The time for medication was another thing divination showed. The things used for divination could be coconut fronds, shoots, pandanus leaves, sennit, stones, and leaves.