Ani Couni Chaouani

Lyrics - Arapaho

(Native American folk song – Arapaho)

Ani couni chaouani
Ani couni chaouani
Awawa bikana caïna
Awawa bikana caïna
E aouni bissini
E aouni bissini

English Translation – Father, have mercy on me

Father, have mercy on me,
Father, have mercy on me;
Because I’m dying of thirst,
Because I’m dying of thirst;
Everything is gone – I have nothing to eat,
Everything is gone – I have nothing to eat.

See also


  • Song with chords (PDF)
  • MIDI file
  • Listen to the song

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2 thoughts on “Ani Couni Chaouani”

  1. This is not a “folk song.” It is a Ghost Dance song from the 1890s. It is definitely Arapaho, and the translation “Father Have Mercy on Me” is definitely correct. The song has nothing to do with the Iroquois, at least in terms of its origin. The actual Arapaho words, in modern orthography, are:

    ‘oh neixoo, cih’owouunoni = oy my father, take pity on me
    ‘oh woow biixonokooyeinoo = for now I am fasting and crying
    hiiyohou’ nebii3iit = it has disappeared, my food

    Dr. Andrew Cowell, Director, Center for Native American and Indigenous Studies, University of Colorado

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