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West Visayas is comprised of Iloilo,

Capiz, Antique, Aklan, Negros
Occidental, and Guimaras. People in
these regions speak languages that
have given birth to the literary legacy
of West Visayas-Hiligaynon and
Aklanon- which grew from Kiniray-a.
How the Diversity Unfolded
The mother language of West Visayas-and thus, of
Hiligaynon literature-is Kinaray-a.

Kiniray-a was the language of the 10 datus from

Borneo who, according to the stories of our old folks,
gave a golden headgear and a necklace that reached
the ground to the aboriginal Ati, in exchange for the
island of Panay.

Two major languages of the West Visayas-Hiligaynon

and Aklanon- grew from Kiniray-a.
The oral tradition of Hiligaynon literature
includes the following:
“Binalaybay” (Poem)
“Ambahan” (Long Song)
“Paktakon” (Riddle)
“Hurubaton” (Proverb) “Asoy” (Tale)
“Ili-ili” (Lullaby)
“Siday” (Poetic Duel)
“Balitaw” (Love Song)
Folk song are usually accomplished by
string, percussion, or wind instrument.
Example of Panay prominent epics:

“Labaw Donggon”
“Composo”, a ballad sung as a tribute to a folk
hero or a milestone event in a community.
“Bordon” was commonly played during vigils
for the dead.
“Flores de Mayo” a devotional prayer sung to
the Virgin Mary during the month of May.

Mariano Perfecto a Bicolano by birth

contributed greatly to Hiligaynon literature by
establishing the Imprenta La Panayana in Iloilo
City around the late 1800s.

Also Perfecto responsible for the publishing of

the widely popular “Alamanake Panayanhon”,
wich contained the passion, novenas, and works
by early Hiligaynon writers.
In recent decades, government initiatives have helped
Hiligaynon literature to contribute thriving. During
the administration of President Corazon Aquino,
campus writing in Kiniray-a was heavily promoted and
prominence in multilingual writing rose in the
Hiligaynon region. In 1997 Palanca awards began to
recognize exemplary Hiligaynon short stories. (side by
side with stories written in English, Filipino, and other
local languages).

Today, writers from the West Visayas region write

beautifully in Kiniray-a, Hiligaynon, and Aklanon---
proof that the literary tradition of the area has
blossomed across the centuries.
Read this original poem in Kiniray-a…appreciate
how the message of hope transcends all
languages and cultures.

Nagakanta Ako kang Paglaum

Genevieve Asenjo

Umawit Ako ng Pag-asa…..Tagalog Version

Genevieve Asenjo

Answer the following question

1.What theme does the poem want to

impart? What mindset or emotion is
being developed by the elements of the
2.Comment on the imagery of the poem.
How do the images enhance the theme
and tone?
3.What situation could the persona be
going through?