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Toaq with Ease

Chíetoaı kọjo – 4th Lesson

Soaq da. There’s a garden.
Tı sá poq sóaq da. In the garden are some people.
Kueqtua hó shámu da. They are collecting the apples.
Tısha jí sóaq da. I arrive in the garden.
Kaqgaı kúeqtua jí da. The collectors see me.
Kuq sá shı mó « Paqtao súq ba! » teo da. Someone says: “Take part!”
Tıu soa jí hó da. So I help them.
Kueqtua jí da rú kueqtua jí da. I collect and I collect.
Je nuaq da. It is night-time.
Rú seakuaı tú poq da. And everyone is exhausted.


  1. Soaq da “There is a garden”. We saw sentences of this form in Lesson 1. When a verb is used without any nouns, it describes a situation where something is or does the thing described by the verb, without saying what thing in particular. Recall Hıaı da “There is laughing” from Lesson 1. Another example: Kıa da “There is red.”

  2. sá poq “a person”, “somebody”, “some people”. before a verb makes an indefinite noun. We already encountered sá shı “someone”/”something” in the previous lesson. Compare this to póq, which would mean “the person” or “the people”.

  3. kueqtua “to gather/collect something” and shamu “to be an apple” (shámu “the apple(s)”) are examples of verbs that are made up of two or more syllables. The tone marked on the first vowel is spread out over the entire word.

  4. “he/she/they” is another pronoun. It refers back to one or more people and is gender-neutral.

  5. Note how in English, we say “I arrive at/in the garden”, but tısha jí sóaq literally means “arrive I garden”. It is not necessary to use “at” or “in”. Whichever noun comes second is automatically understood to be the place of arrival.

  6. The function words and teo are placed around quoted text. Think of them as spoken quotation marks.

  7. With ba, we encounter our first counterpart to da. In Lesson 1 it was hinted at that there are other particles like da for questions and imperatives – ba is used in expressing various kinds of imperatives. By placing ba at the end of a sentence (in place of da), the sentence is transformed into an imperative. An imperative with ba can be used to express requests and commands, but also invitations, hopes, exhortations and more. The statement “you take part” here becomes the wish “take part!”

  8. tıu “then, so” is an interjection. These can appear anywhere in the sentence, and usually take the falling tone.

  9. je is another interjection, introducing a new topic.

  10. tú poq “everyone”, “everybody”, “each person”. For now, remember this as a unit.



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