Palibe Ofana Ndiye – Nyimbo, or Malawian Hymn

It’s a burnout. I am sure of it. Winter semester was hot on the heels of the fall semester. I am walking, talking, doing workouts as usual, have cleaned out my desk and sketched out the major tasks of February in front of me. But.

I have to admit it, it’s also a longing for Malawi. It’s the rainy season, and Steven is sending me pictures of ripe mangoes that cost a ridiculously cheap price of 10MK each. I miss our local staff, missionary Baek, the rainbows and the milky way. And I miss the singing. It took me some time to retrieve this video from YouTube, as it never received the limelight. The microphone malfunctioned that day, and the church was full to the brim with guests from Karonga – this isn’t the best video that you could get from Daeyang Luke Hospital’s Sunday worships, but it’s enough to make me happy.

The lyrics are:

Palibe ofana ndiye, palibe ofana ndiye, Sadzapezekanso (repeated)

Ndayenda yenda konse konse, Ndazungulira konse konse, Ndafuna funa konse konse, Sadzapezekanso (repeated)


There is no-one like him, You’ll not find anyone like him
I wandered, I wandered everywhere. I turned around everywhere. I searched everywhere. You’ll not find anyone like him

So basically its the Chichewa equivalent of ‘There is no one like him’. In most cases though, it’s ‘palibe ofana naye’ instead of ‘ndiye’. Sometimes you will find ‘wofana’ instead of ‘ofana’. Plus, sometimes people seem to use ‘ponse’ which actually means everywhere instead of ‘konse’, which means the whole or entire according to Steven Paas’ Chichewa Dictionary. All in all, I haven’t really found a standard orthography.

Well, back to work and Analysis.

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