lesson 12 - anu


󱤋 esun

market, shop, fair, bazaar, business transaction

esun is a type of swap or exchange. Usually it's used to mean "buy," "sell," or "trade." The use of a currency isn't required for something to be esun. Trading baseball cards is esun. esun doesn't imply that both parties lose something. Exchanging knowledge is esun, even though neither party loses knowledge. Some interesting extentions of esun I've seen include using esun for breathing, where one trades the air inside them with the outside world. Seeing esun as a swap more than as a type of buying has had it being used far more often these days in my experience.

󱤛 kiwen

hard object, metal, rock, stone

kiwen are things whose form resists changing. This often talks about a hard physical material or object, like a rock or wood or crystal. It can describe something's material, so a chair made out of a hard material could be kiwen. It is additionally possible to talk about nonphysical things using kiwen, but by using kiwen to describe nonphysical things, their forms are being framed as resisting change. For example, I can describe a recipe as kiwen. With some explaining, this might mean that in order for me to consider it my recipe, it must not change, and if it does change it would no longer be my recipe.

󱥱 utala

battle, challenge, compete against, struggle against

The semantic space of utala contains conflicts, contests, and battles. When utala is used, it’s talking about some sort of struggle or competition between two or more parties, or something being framed that way. So it could be a battle between two rival armies, but it could also be a battle between me and myself if I’m framing it that way. utala is often targeted, closer to “attack” than “battle.” Anything can be an utala if it is being framed as a struggle or attack of some sort that involves two parties. Playing a musical instrument could be an utala for a beginner player. Taking a test is a very fun thing to call an utala, because the test-taker is fighting the test.

󱤿 nasin

way, custom, doctrine, method, path, road

nasin ties together method and path. Physically, a nasin is a path or direction one follows, a road you can drive along, any way to reach a location, or perhaps even to wander. metaphysically, nasin refers to a way to live your life, a way to make something, or any other method. just as easily as main street can be a nasin, so can communism or the pomodoro technique or setting an alarm or islam. It doesn't need a specific destination, but there's usually some purpose to it.

󱥜 sike

round or circular thing; ball, circle, cycle, sphere, wheel; of one year

sike represents round objects and cycles. sike can be used to refer to the smoothness of an edge. sike can be used to talk about marbles and flat disks such as cookies. sike can talk about wheels or balls or even gyroscopes. Because sike can also represent cycles, it can be used to describe a repeated action. "toki sike" could be repeating the same thing over and over again. "utala sike" could be a never ending cycle of war, or some online discourse that just won't end. Wether it's physical or not, a sike will always loop around and end where it started.


󱤇 anu

(forms an or-conjunction)



󱤇 anu is a conjunction meaning "or"

it adds a new phrase to the current part of speech (subject, predicate, object, preposition), and indicates an and/or relationship between the two (or more) phrases.


󱥆󱤧 󱤑 󱤇 󱥢
ona li jan anu soweli
~ they're a person or a dog

󱥴󱤧󱤘󱥩󱤬 󱤰 󱤇 󱥚
waso li ken tawa lon ma anu sewi
~ birds can move on the ground or in the sky

󱤗 󱤇 󱥦 󱤧󱤘󱤶
kasi anu suwi li ken moku
~ plants or sweets can be food

notes about questions

󱤇 anu doesn't automatically form questions.

one way to use 󱤇 anu to ask a question might be to list the possible options using 󱤇 anu, and then ask which option the listener agrees with.

waso anu soweli li ken · seme li pona mute tawa sina
~ do you like birds or cats more?
~ birds or cats are possible. which is really good to you?

another way to ask an either-or question with 󱤇 anu is by adding 󱤇󱥙 anu seme as the final option.

mi anu ona anu seme li ken tawa lon poka sina
~ can me or him walk beside you?


translate from toki pona to english

mi wile esun e kiwen

~ i want to buy rocks

~ i want to sell rocks

ijo li wile kama jo e ijo kepeken mani anu utala

~ people need to obtain things using money or violence

sina ken utala e soweli mute anu soweli wawa · sina wile utala e seme

~ do you want to fight a lot of animals or a strong animal

~ you can fight many animals or a strong animal. which do you want to fight?

translate from english to toki pona

birds draw using rocks or tools

~ waso li sitelen kepeken kiwen anu ilo

you can put this in the box of money or the box of food

~ sina ken pana e ni tawa poki mani anu poki moku

read sitelen pona


~ mi wile ala ante e nasin ike mi

~ i don't want to change my evil ways


~ ona lili li sona ala e nasin ilo

~ the small ones don't know proper lawnmower etiquette


~ mi wile musi anu moku

~ i either want to play or eat